Caesarean birth is associated with both maternal and paternal origin in immigrants in Sweden: a population-based study Academic Article uri icon


  • To investigate the association between maternal country of birth and father's origin and unplanned and planned caesarean birth in Sweden.Population-based register study including all singleton births in Sweden between 1999 and 2012 (n = 1 311 885). Multinomial regression was conducted to estimate odds ratios (OR) for unplanned and planned caesarean with 95% confidence intervals for migrant compared with Swedish-born women. Analyses were stratified by parity.Women from Ethiopia, India, South Korea, Chile, Thailand, Iran, and Finland had statistically significantly higher odds of experiencing unplanned (primiparous OR 1.10-2.19; multiparous OR 1.13-2.02) and planned caesarean (primiparous OR 1.18-2.25; multiparous OR 1.13-2.46). Only women from Syria, the former Yugoslavia and Germany had consistently lower risk than Swedish-born mothers (unplanned: primiparous OR 0.76-0.86; multiparous OR 0.74-0.86. Planned; primiparous OR 0.75-0.82; multiparous OR 0.60-0.94). Women from Iraq and Turkey had higher odds of an unplanned caesarean but lower odds of a planned one (among multiparous). In most cases, these results remained after adjustment for available social characteristics, maternal health factors, and pregnancy complications. Both parents being foreign-born increased the odds of unplanned and planned caesarean in primiparous and multiparous women.Unplanned and planned caesarean birth varied by women's country of birth, with both higher and lower rates compared with Swedish-born women, and the father's origin was also of importance. These variations were not explained by a wide range of social, health, or pregnancy factors.

publication date

  • 2017