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Stress in early pregnancy can lead to shorter pregnancies, more pre-term births and fewer baby boys

8 December 2011

Stress in the second and third months of pregnancy can shorten pregnancies, increase the risk of pre-term births and may affect the ratio of boys to girls being born, leading to a decline in male babies. These are the conclusions of a study in the journal Human Reproduction that investigated the effect on pregnant women of the stress caused by the 2005 Tarapaca earthquake in Chile.

Read the press release
Read the paper 'Prenatal stress, gestational age and secondary sex ratio: the sex-specific effects of exposure to a natual disaster in early pregnancy'