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Parental recall of birth weight: how accurate is it?

Lookup NU author(s): Dr John O'Sullivan, Professor Mark PearceORCiD, Professor Louise Parker


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Objective-To assess the accuracy of parental recall of birth weight in a British population and to investigate whether social class and age of the child significantly influence the accuracy of recalled birth weight. Methods-A questionnaire was given to parents whose children were participating in a blood pressure study and the hospital records were retrieved to check the birth weight data. Results-At the time of the study, the children (n = 649) ranged in age from 6 to 15 years. Seventy five per cent of the recalled birth weights were within 50 g of that recorded in the hospital records. No significant associations were found between the difference in birth weights (recalled birth weight minus hospital record) and social class of the parents or age of the child at time of data collection. Conclusion-This large study shows that parental recall of birth weight is good across the social classes and up to 16 years after delivery. There was no evidence of systematic bias, which would prejudice results of studies on the relation of birth weight to adult hypertension.

Publication metadata

Author(s): O'Sullivan JJ, Pearce MS, Parker L

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Archives of Disease in Childhood

Year: 2000

Volume: 82

Issue: 3

Pages: 202-203

ISSN (print): 0003-9888

ISSN (electronic): 1468-2044

Publisher: BMJ Group


DOI: 10.1136/adc.82.3.202


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