Sex ratio of congenital abnormalities in the function of maternal age: A population-based study

Gyula Csermely, Robert Urbán, Andrew E. Czeizel, Béla Veszprémi

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Maternal age effect is well-known in the origin of numerical chromosomal aberrations and some isolated congenital abnormalities (CAs). The sex ratio (SR), i.e. number of males divided by the number of males and females together, of most CAs deviates from the SR of newborn population (0.51). The objective of this analysis was to evaluate the possible association of maternal age with the SR of isolated CAs in a population-based large dataset of the Hungarian Case-Control Surveillance of Congenital Abnormalities, 1980-1996. First, SR of 24 CA entities/groups was estimated in 21494 patients with isolated CA. In the next step SR of different maternal age groups was compared to the mean SR of the given CA-groups. The SR of four CA-groups showed some deviation in certain maternal age groups. Cases with anencephaly had female excess in young mothers (<25 years). Cases with skull's CAs particularly craniosynostosis had a male excess in cases born to women over 30 years. Two other CA groups (cleft lip±palate and valvar pulmonic stenosis within the group of right-sided obstructive defect of heart) had significant deviation in SR of certain maternal age groups from the mean SR, but these deviations were not harmonized with joining age groups and thus were considered as a chance effect due to multiple testing. In conclusion, our study did not suggest that in general SR of isolated CAs might be modified by certain maternal age groups with some exception such as anencephaly and craniosynostosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-91
Number of pages7
JournalCongenital anomalies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2015



  • Anencephaly
  • Congenital abnormalities
  • Craniosynostosis
  • Maternal age
  • Sex ratio

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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