Maternal and environmental factors influencing infant birth weight in Ibadan, Nigeria

Uche C. Isiugo-Abanihe, Olubukola A. Oke


Fetal weight at birth is a major determinant of survival, physical growth and mental development of an infant. About 14 percent of all births in Nigeria are born with low birth weight. Studies on birth weight in Nigeria have focused mainly on the biomedical risk factors and have largely ignored the influence the socio-cultural environment which encompasses maternal knowledge, beliefs, and practices during the prenatal period. With the premise that birth weight shows a reverse social gradient, this study examined the effects of maternal, sociocultural and environmental factors on the birth weight of infants in Ibadan. The research adopted a prospective survey design method involving multistage sampling procedure to select 1,138 pregnant women accessing antenatal care services from both orthodox and community health providers. The instrument comprised structured questionnaire, and secondary data were generated from the patients’ files retrieved from the antenatal care centres. The study identified a number of maternal, socioeconomic and environmental factors that significantly influence low birth weight and suggested actions that would help reduce the risk factors of low birth weight and promote care-seeking and demand for skilled care at all stages of pregnancy.


Antenatal care, high risk pregnancy, skilled care, maternal health, birth weight.

Full Text:




  • There are currently no refbacks.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

ISSN 2308-7854 (online); ISSN 0850-5780 (print)

Powered by OJS and hosted by Stellenbosch University Library and Information Service since 2013.


This journal is hosted by the SU LIS on request of the journal owner/editor. The SU LIS takes no responsibility for the content published within this journal, and disclaim all liability arising out of the use of or inability to use the information contained herein. We assume no responsibility, and shall not be liable for any breaches of agreement with other publishers/hosts.

SUNJournals Help