Tobacco consumption during pregnancy in Bangladesh: level and burden among slum women in Dhaka District

Sadananda Mitra, Independent Consultant
Kabita R. Bhadra, Independent Researcher

The level of tobacco consumption has been increasing in Bangladesh, in particular the marginal class who are engaged in manual labour. Tobacco is responsible for more deaths than any other risk factors than high blood pressure. It also increases the burden of diseases during pregnancy and childbirth. A cross-sectional study of the 549 women from Dhaka district reveals that the use of tobacco or tobacco products during pregnancy was 10 percent, on an average. But there was significant difference of users among slum households, older women with higher order of parity and illiterate women. There was significant difference in use of tobacco by settlement pattern. Forty percent women had tobacco habit from slum households compared to eight percent from the non-slum settlements. The multivariate analysis shows that the chance of complicated pregnancy including hemorrhage was higher for women who consumed tobacco during pregnancy or have tobacco chewing habit. Utilization of medical care during pregnancy had reduced the likelihood of tobacco consumption habit. Mothers with tobacco habits suffered multiple complications during pregnancy and delivery. The product limit method shows that the mean duration of illness during childbirth was higher for these women. To reduce the burden of tobacco, health education programme at the community level could be launched through preconception and prenatal care for the socially backward women in the slum areas.

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Presented in Session 87: Mortality in developing countries