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Titolo:
Low birth weight, maternal birth-spacing decisions, and future reproduction - A cost-benefit analysis
Autore:
Bereczkei, T; Hofer, A; Ivan, Z;
Indirizzi:
Janus Pannonius Univ Pecs, Dept Gen Psychol, H-7624 Pecs, Hungary Janus Pannonius Univ Pecs Pecs Hungary H-7624 chol, H-7624 Pecs, Hungary
Titolo Testata:
HUMAN NATURE-AN INTERDISCIPLINARY BIOSOCIAL PERSPECTIVE
fascicolo: 2, volume: 11, anno: 2000,
pagine: 183 - 205
SICI:
1045-6767(2000)11:2<183:LBWMBD>2.0.ZU;2-G
Fonte:
ISI
Lingua:
ENG
Soggetto:
EVOLUTIONARY ECOLOGY; STRATEGIES; ATTACHMENT; GYPSIES;
Keywords:
birth spacing; cost-benefit analysis; gypsies; Hungary; low birth weight; reproductive decisions;
Tipo documento:
Article
Natura:
Periodico
Settore Disciplinare:
Social & Behavioral Sciences
Citazioni:
40
Recensione:
Indirizzi per estratti:
Indirizzo: Bereczkei, T Janus Pannonius Univ Pecs, Dept Gen Psychol, Ifjusag U 6, H-7624 Pecs, Hungary Janus Pannonius Univ Pecs Ifjusag U 6 Pecs Hungary H-7624 ry
Citazione:
T. Bereczkei et al., "Low birth weight, maternal birth-spacing decisions, and future reproduction - A cost-benefit analysis", HUM NATURE, 11(2), 2000, pp. 183-205

Abstract

The aim of this study is an analysis of the possible adaptive consequencesof delivery of low birth weight infants. We attempt to reveal the cost andbenefit components of bearing small children, estimate the chance of the infants' survival, and calculate the mothers' reproductive success. According to life-history theory, under certain circumstances mothers can enhance their lifetime fitness by lowering the rate of investment in an infant and/or enhancing the rate of subsequent births. We assume that living in a riskyenvironment and giving birth to a small infant may involve a shift from qualitative to quantitative production of offspring. Given high infant mortality rates, parents will have a reproductive interest in producing a relatively large number of children with a smaller amount of prenatal investment. This hypothesis was tested among 650 Gypsy and 717 non-Gypsy Hungarian mothers. Our study has revealed that 23.8% of the Gypsy mothers had low birth weight (<2,500 g) children, whose mortality rate is very high. These mothersalso had more spontaneous abortions and stillbirths than those with normalweight children. As a possible response to these reproductive failures, they shortened birth spacing, gaining 2-4 years across their reproductive lifespan for having additional children. Because of the relatively short interbirth intervals, by the end of their fertility period, Gypsy mothers with one or two low birth weight infants have significantly more children than their ethnic Hungarian counter-parts. They appear to compensate for handicapsassociated with low birth weights by having a larger number of closely spaced children following the birth of one or more infants with a reduced probability of survival. The possible alternative explanations are discussed, and the long-term reproductive benefits are estimated for bath ethnic groups.

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Documento generato il 05/04/20 alle ore 03:13:25