Document Detail

Did mothers begin with an advantage? A study of childbirth and maternal health in England and Wales, 1778-1929.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12745806     Owner:  HMD     Status:  MEDLINE    
This paper contributes to two ongoing debates among demographers. One deals with the immediate and deferred health effects of childbearing in the past, and the other with competing explanations--the frailty and insult accumulation hypotheses--for differences in individual health later in life. The study population consists of working women who lived at four locales in England and Wales in parts of the period 1778-1929 and who were under observation for incapacitating sickness during and after their childbearing years. Mothers within the study population are contrasted with a comparison group made up principally of non-mothers. The mothers began their reproductive careers with an advantage in health that was especially evident in the duration of sickness episodes. Even though individual births were less hazardous than individual sicknesses at the same ages, the cumulative effect of childbearing appears to have eroded the mothers' advantage. By ages 50-74 the mothers resembled the comparison group in health.
James Riley
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Historical Article; Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Population studies     Volume:  57     ISSN:  0032-4728     ISO Abbreviation:  Popul Stud (Camb)     Publication Date:  2003  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2003-05-14     Completed Date:  2003-06-30     Revised Date:  2004-11-17    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0376427     Medline TA:  Popul Stud (Camb)     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  5-20     Citation Subset:  Q    
Indiana University.
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MeSH Terms
History, 18th Century
History, 19th Century
History, 20th Century
Insurance, Health / history*,  statistics & numerical data*
Maternal Welfare / history*
Societies / history*
Women, Working / history*

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