Maternal smoking during pregnancy links to childhood blood pressure through birth weight and body mass index: NHANES 1999-2018 Journal Article uri icon
  • Maternal smoking during pregnancy (MSDP) is associated with lower birth weight, childhood obesity, and elevated blood pressure (BP) in offspring. We aimed to examine whether birth weight and body mass index (BMI) mediate the effect of MSDP on BP in children. The study included 14,713 children aged 8 to 15 years from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys from 1999 to 2018. General third-variable models were used to examine the mediating effects of birth weight and BMI on the association of MSDP with BP. A total of 1928 (13.1%) children were exposed to MSDP. MSDP was associated with reduced birth weight (p < 0.001), increased BMI (p < 0.001), and elevated systolic BP (p = 0.005). MSDP was not associated with systolic BP after adjustment for birth weight and BMI z-score (p = 0.875), with 95.0% of the effect of MSDP on BP mediated by birth weight (39.1%) and BMI (55.9%). In conclusion, lower birth weight and increased obesity measures mediate the adverse effects of MSDP on BP in children. These findings provide novel mechanistic insight into the adverse effect of MSDP on BP in children and have implications for preventing hypertension in later life.

  • Link to Article
    publication date
  • 2024
  • published in
  • Adverse Effects
  • Body Mass Index
  • Hypertension
  • Obesity
  • Pediatrics
  • Pregnancy
  • Smoking
  • Additional Document Info
  • 38
  • issue
  • 2