Low Birth Weight of Newborns and Its Association with Demographic and Socio-economic Determinants: Findings from Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) Bangladesh 2019





Low birth weights (LBW), Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS), Bangladesh


Background: Low Birth Weight (LBW) is considered as one of the major public health problems which is an important determinant of morbidity and mortality among newborn babies in Bangladesh. This study aimed to examine the current prevalence of LBW and its association with different socio-economic and demographic determinants in the context of Bangladesh.


Methods: The cross-sectional data for this study were extracted from the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) Bangladesh 2019, which was carried out in 2019 by the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) in collaboration with UNICEF Bangladesh, as part of the Global MICS Program. To examine the association of LBW with other selected determinants, Chi-square (χ2) test was performed and a logistic regression model was used to explore the net effect of determinants on LBW using odds ratio (OR).

Results: Using the sub-sample of nationally representative data, the study reveals that the prevalence of LBW in Bangladesh was 13.6%. The highest prevalence of LBW was found among mothers whose ages were less than 20 years, who did not receive prenatal care, who were not educated, who were from poor socio-economic conditions. LBW was also severe among infants with the highest birth order and multiple births. This study also identified the mother’s age at the time of childbirth, the status of receiving prenatal care, type of birth (single or multiple), birth order, educational status of the mother, wealth index, and place of residence are the most important determinants that are significantly associated with LBW status of newborns. 

Conclusions: This study suggests that the Government should take necessary initiatives to address the risk factors which are responsible for the high prevalence of LBW in Bangladesh. This study will also deliver the degree of success in public health policy in Bangladesh and aims to help outline future tactics to lessen the prevalence of LBW.

Keywords: Low birth weights (LBW), Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS), Bangladesh.


1. Wilcox AJ. On the importance—and the unimportance—of birthweight. Int J Epidemiol 2001;30:1233-41. doi:10.1093/ije/30.6.1233
2. Glass HC, Costarino AT, Stayer SA, Brett C, Cladis F, Davis PJ. Outcomes for extremely premature infants. Anesth Analg 2015;120:1337-51.
3. da Silva Lopes K, Ota E, Shakya P, Dagvadorj A, Balogun OO, Peña-Rosas JP, et al. Effects of nutrition interventions during pregnancy on low birth weight: An overview of systematic reviews. BMJ Glob Health 2017;2:e000389. doi:10.1136/bmjgh-2017-000389
4. Khatun S, Rahman M. Socio-economic determinants of low birth weight in Bangladesh: A multivariate approach. Bangladesh Med Res Counc Bull 2008;34:81-6. doi:10.3329/bmrcb.v34i3.1857
5. Organization WH. Global Nutrition Targets 2025: Low birth weight policy brief. World Health Organization (WHO) 2014.
6. Organization WH. Sixty-fifth world health assembly, Geneva, 21–26 May 2012. Resolutions and decisions, annexes. World Health Organization (WHO) 2012.
7. Risnes KR, Vatten LJ, Baker JL, Jameson K, Sovio U, Kajantie E, et al. Birthweight and mortality in adulthood: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Int J Epidemiol 2011;40:647-61. doi:10.1093/ije/dyq267
8. Larroque B, Bertrais S, Czernichow P, Léger J. School difficulties in 20-year-olds who were born small for gestational age at term in a regional cohort study. Pediatrics 2001;108:111-5. doi:10.1542/peds.108.1.111
9. Mayer C, Joseph KS. Fetal growth: A review of terms, concepts and issues relevant to obstetrics. Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol 2013;41:136-45. doi:10.1002/uog.11204
10. Deshpande Jayant D, Phalke DB, Bangal VB, Peeyuusha D, Sushen B. Maternal risk factors for low birth weight neonates: a hospital based casecontrol study in rural area of western maharashtra, India. Natl J Community Med 2011;2:394-8.
11. Scharf RJ, Stroustrup A, Conaway MR, DeBoer MD. Growth and development in children born very low birthweight. Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2016;101:F433-8. doi:10.1136/archdischild-2015-309427
12. Barker DJ, Forsén T, Uutela A, Osmond C, Eriksson JG. Size at birth and resilience to effects of poor living conditions in adult life: longitudinal study. BMJ 2001;323:1273. doi:10.1136/bmj.323.7324.1273
13. Hodek JM, von der Schulenburg JM, Mittendorf T. Measuring economic consequences of preterm birth-Methodological recommendations for the evaluation of personal burden on children and their caregivers. Health Econ Rev 2011;1:1-6. doi:10.1186/2191-1991-1-6
14. Martinson ML, Reichman NE. Socioeconomic inequalities in low birth weight in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia. Am J Public Health 2016;106:748-54.
15. Kalanda B, Verhoeff F, le Cessie S, Brabin J. Low birth weight and fetal anaemia as risk factors for infant morbidity in rural Malawi. Malawi Med J 2009;21:69-74. doi:10.4314/mmj.v21i2.44553
16. Azimul SK, Matin A, Shabnam JH, Shamianaz S, Bannerje M. Maternal factors affecting low birth weight in urban area of Bangladesh. J Dhaka Med Coll 2009;18:64-9.
17. Aurora S, Vishnu BB, Habibullah S, Srinivasan S, Puri R, Rajaram P. Maternal nutrition and birth weight. Indian J Mat Child Health 1994;5:73-5.
18. Deshmukh JS, Motghare DD, Zodpey SP, Wadhva SK. Low birth weight and associated maternal factors in an urban area. Indian Pediatrics 1998;35:33-6.
19. Nair NS, Rao RP, Chandrashekar S, Acharya D, Bhat HV. Socio-demographic and maternal determinants of low birth weight: A multivariate approach. Indian J Pediatr 2000;67:9-14. doi:10.1007/BF02802625
20. Ali Khan M, Mustagir G, Islam R, Kaikobad S, Khan HT. Exploring the association between adverse maternal circumstances and low birth weight in neonates: A nationwide population-based study in Bangladesh. BMJ Open 2020;10:e036162. doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2019-036162
21. Ahmed FU, Karim E, Bhuiyan SN. Mid-arm circumference at birth as predictor of low birth weight and neonatal mortality. J Biosoc Sci 2000;32:487-93. doi:10.1017/S0021932000004879
22. Khan JR, Islam MM, Awan N, Muurlink O. Analysis of low birth weight and its co-variants in Bangladesh based on a sub-sample from nationally representative survey. BMC Pediatr 2018;18:1-9. doi:10.1186/s12887-018-1068-0
23. Dasgupta A, Basu R. Determinants of low birth weight in a Block of Hooghly, West Bengal: A multivariate analysis. Int J Biol Med Res 2011;2:838-42.
24. Progotir Pathey Bangladesh, Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2019, Survey Findings Report 2019.
25. Begum P, Hassan MK, Saha AK, Akter T, Afrin M. Risk Factors of low birth weight baby: A review. Faridpur Med Coll J 2017;12:40-6.
26. Karim R, Mondal NI, Rana M, Karmaker H, Bharati P, Hossain G. Maternal factors are important predictors of low birth weight: evidence from Bangladesh Demographic & Health Survey-2011. Mal J Nutr 2016;22:257-65.
27. Monawar Hosain GM, Chatterjee N, Begum A, Saha SC. Factors associated with low birthweight in rural Bangladesh. J Trop Pediatr 2005;52:87-91. doi:10.1093/tropej/fmi066
28. Kader M, Perera NK. Socio-economic and nutritional determinants of low birth weight in India. North Am J Med Sci 2014;6:302. doi:10.4103/1947-2714.136902
29. Begum MR, Biswas SC. Maternal factors of low birth weight babies in an antenatal care hospital in Bangladesh. Asian J Med Biol Res 2019;5:271-9. doi:10.3329/ajmbr.v5i4.45264
30. Haque SR, Tisha S, Huq N. Poor birth size a badge of low birth weight accompanying less antenatal care in Bangladesh with substantial divisional variation: evidence from BDHS-2011. Pub Health Res 2015;5:184-91. doi:10.5923/j.phr.20150506.03
31. Kogan MD, Alexander GR, Kotelchuck M, Nagey DA. Relation of the content of prenatal care to the risk of low birth weight: Maternal reports of health behavior advice and initial prenatal care procedures. Jama 1994;271:1340-5. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03510410052032
32. Lu MC, Tache V, Alexander GR, Kotelchuck M, Halfon N. Preventing low birth weight: Is prenatal care the answer? J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med 2003;13:362-80. doi:10.1080/jmf.13.6.362.380
33. Ahammed B, Maniruzzaman M, Ferdausi F, Abedin MM, Hossain MT. Socioeconomic and demographic factors associated with low birth weight in Nepal: Data from 2016 Nepal demographic and health survey. Soc Health Behav 2020;3:158-65. doi:10.4103/SHB.SHB_46_20
34. Kayode GA, Amoakoh-Coleman M, Agyepong IA, Ansah E, Grobbee DE, Klipstein-Grobusch K. Contextual risk factors for low birth weight: a multilevel analysis. PloS One 2014;9:e109333.
35. Mumbare SS, Maindarkar G, Darade R, Yenge S, Tolani MK, Patole K. Maternal risk factors associated with term low birth weight neonates: A matched-pair case control study. Indian Pediatr 2012;49:25-8. doi:10.1007/s13312-012-0010-z







How to Cite

Low Birth Weight of Newborns and Its Association with Demographic and Socio-economic Determinants: Findings from Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) Bangladesh 2019. (2021). International Journal of Health Studies, 7(1), 37-42. https://doi.org/10.22100/ijhs.v7i1.837