Date of Award

Spring 5-2019

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Advisor(s)

ANNA V WILKINSON, PHD

Second Advisor

MARK A CANFIELD, PHD

Abstract

Background: Birth defects are disproportionately higher among certain race/ethnic groups. We examined how birth defects prevalence differs among the less studied non-Hispanic (NH) Asian and any American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations, relative to NH Whites. Methods: Data were obtained from the Texas Birth Defect Registry from 1999 to 2015 for infants born to Texas-resident mothers who were NH White, NH Asian, or AI/AN. This covers a livebirth population of 2.6 million. Prevalence ratios were calculated for NH Asians and AI/ANs (relative to NH Whites) for 44 birth defects using Poisson regression and were adjusted for maternal age. Results: After adjustment, there were 34 statistically significant prevalence ratios. Among NH Asians, 23 defects had a lower adjusted prevalence ratio (aPR) and 3 defects had a higher aPR. AI/ANs had 2 defects with a significantly lower aPR and 6 with a higher aPR. Conclusions: NH Asians generally have a lower prevalence for birth defects while AI/ANs have a higher prevalence compared to NH Whites. These findings update the limited previous literature on this topic and also warrant additional research among larger populations in order to identify the true association of these understudied race/ethnic groups.

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