Nausea and vomiting in pregnancy: a Systematic Review of socio-demographic risk factors
Objective. Nausea and vomiting in pregnancy are two of the most prevalent symptoms and may have an unfavorable effect on a pregnant’s daily life. The aim of this systematic review was to identify studies which assessed the risk of socio-demographic factors for nausea and vomiting in pregnancy.
Materials and Methods. This study was conducted according to the PRISMA guidelines and the PubMed, Scopus, and Google Scholar databases were reviewed. The Newcastle-Ottawa Scale (NOS) for non-randomized studies for the assessment of the studies’ quality was used. The socio-demographic risk factors reviewed were age, educational level, income, employment, marital status, alcohol intake and smoking.
Results. Finally, 718 articles were found, of which 13 matched the eligibility criteria. The studies’ sample sizes varied from 116 to 81.486 participants. The findings showed that results are conflicting for the majority of the risk variables studied. The majority of the studies did not identified age, educational level and alcohol consumption as risk factors for nausea and vomiting in pregnancy. The relationship between income, employment and marital status, smoking and nausea and vomiting in pregnancy remains ambiguous because of the existence of conflicting conclusions.
Conclusions. The emergence of nausea and vomiting in pregnancy is influenced by socio-demographic variables. Obstetric health care providers should be conscious of several socio-demographic characteristics which may act as risk factors for the occurrence of nausea and vomiting in pregnancy and they should use a holistic and sensitive approach to identify pregnant women who might have greater risks to experience these symptoms.