Risk status of pregnant women in rural areas of Belagavi: a cross sectional study

Katherine J. Bernard, Sulakshana Baliga


Background: ‘High-risk’ pregnancies account for a significant proportion of perinatal morbidity and mortality worldwide. Simple prenatal scoring systems can be used to assess risk status of pregnancy and inform subsequent management. Their use in rural areas and low-resource settings could be of particular benefit. This study employed pregnancy risk status assessment in one such area of rural India. The objectives of the study were to estimate the prevalence of low, moderate and high-risk pregnancy among women in a rural area of Belagavi and to identify factors associated with high-risk pregnancy status.

Methods: This community-based cross-sectional study was undertaken among 105 pregnant women of all trimesters presenting to antenatal clinics in the Kinaye area of Belagavi, Karnataka, during July 2018. Information on risk factors and socio-demographic details were collected using a questionnaire, and individual risk scores calculated through a scoring system. This was used to estimate prevalence of low, moderate and high-risk status among participants, and subsequently compared against selected variables to identify factors associated with high risk pregnancy status.

Results: Prevalence of high-risk pregnancy among participants was 31.4%, moderate-risk 30.5%, low-risk 29.5% and ‘no risk’ 8.6%. Maternal undernutrition was an important factor associated with high-risk pregnancy.

Conclusions: This study highlights the need for early identification and appropriate management of such cases, in order to prevent adverse perinatal outcomes. The prenatal scoring system used in this study offers a simple method for risk status assessment in pregnant women of all trimesters, suited for use in antenatal clinics in rural areas of India.


High-risk pregnancy, Risk status, Scoring system, Prevalence, Rural areas

Full Text:



Alkema L, Chou D, Hogan D, Zhang S, Moller A, Gemmill A, et al. Global, regional, and national levels and trends in maternal mortality between 1990 and 2015, with scenario-based projections to 2030: a systematic analysis by the UN Maternal Mortality Estimation Inter-Agency Group. Lancet. 2016;387(10017):462-74.

World Health Organization. Fact sheet: Maternal mortality. Available at: news-room/fact-sheets/detail/maternal-mortality. Accessed on 26 July 2018.

World Health Organization. Sustainable Development Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages. Available from: Accessed on 26 July 2018.

Queenan JT, Spong CY, Lockwood CJ. Queenan's management of high-risk pregnancy: an evidence-based approach. 6th ed. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell; 2012: 1.

Coopland A, Peddle L, Baskett T, Rollwagen R, Simpson A, Parker E. A simplified antepartum high-risk pregnancy scoring form. Obstetrical Gynecological Survey. 1977;32(11):721-3.

Dutta S, Das XS. Identification of high risk mothers by a scoring system and its correlation with perinatal outcome. J Obstet Gynaecol India. 1990;40:181-90.

Kolluru V, Reddy A. Study of high risk scoring in pregnancy and perinatal outcome. Indian J Obstetr Gynecol Res. 2016;3(4):407-9.

Samiya M, Samina M. Identification of High Risk Pregnancy by a Scoring System and its Correlation with Perinatal Outcome. Indian J Practising Doctor. 2005;5(1):3-4.

Managing prolonged and obstructed labour, Midwifery education module. Geneva: World Health Organisation; 2008. Available from: Accessed on 26 July 2018.

Derbyshire E. Low maternal weight: effects on maternal and infant health during pregnancy. Nursing Standard. 2007;22(3):43-6.

Singh T, Sharma S, Nagesh S. Socioeconomic status scales updated for 2017. Int J Res in Med Sci. 2017;5(7):3264-7.

Bharti M, Kumar V, Kaur A, Chawla S, Malik M. Prevalence and correlates of High risk pregnancy in rural Haryana: A community based study. Int J Applied Basic Med Res. 2013;3(2):212-7.

Kumar M, Gnanadeep N, Dixit U, Patil P. Prevalence Of High Risk Pregnancy In Rural Dharwad. IOSR J Dent Med Sci. 2015;14(10):29-32.

Ahmed T, Hossain M, Sanin K. Global Burden of Maternal and Child Undernutrition and Micronutrient Deficiencies. Ann Nutr Metabol. 2012;61(1):8-17.