The Effect of Prenatal Stress on Birth Weight: Evidence from the Al-Aqsa Intifada

47 Pages Posted: 1 Mar 2011

See all articles by Hani Mansour

Hani Mansour

University of Colorado at Denver - Department of Economics

Daniel I. Rees

University of Colorado Denver; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Abstract

No previous study has attempted to estimate the effect of intrauterine exposure to armed conflict, a potential source of stress, on pregnancy outcomes. Drawing on data from the 2004 Palestinian Demographic and Health Survey, we examine the relationship between fatalities caused by Israeli security forces (a measure of conflict intensity) and birth weight. Our estimates suggest that first-trimester fatalities are positively related to the probability that a child weighed less than 2,500 grams at birth. This result is consistent with medical studies showing a strong negative correlation between self-reported stress during the first trimester of pregnancy and birth weight.

Keywords: birth weight, prenatal stress, Israeli-Palestinian conflict

JEL Classification: I10, I12

Suggested Citation

Mansour, Hani and Rees, Daniel I., The Effect of Prenatal Stress on Birth Weight: Evidence from the Al-Aqsa Intifada. IZA Discussion Paper No. 5535, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1771257

Hani Mansour (Contact Author)

University of Colorado at Denver - Department of Economics ( email )

Campus Box 181
P.O. Box 173364
Denver, CO 80218
United States

Daniel I. Rees

University of Colorado Denver ( email )

Campus Box 181
P.O. Box 173364
Denver, CO 80218
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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