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

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  • Hani Mansour
  • Daniel I. Rees

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.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.368783.de/dp1108.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 1108.

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Length: 44 p.
Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp1108

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Keywords: Birth weight; prenatal stress; Israeli-Palestinian conflict;

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  1. Black, Sandra E. & Devereux, Paul J. & Salvanes, Kjell G., 2005. "From the Cradle to the Labor Market? The Effect of Birth Weight on Adult Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 1864, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Colin Cameron, 2011. "Robust inference with clustered data," Mexican Stata Users' Group Meetings 2011 07, Stata Users Group.
  3. Mansour, Hani, 2010. "The effects of labor supply shocks on labor market outcomes: Evidence from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 930-939, December.
  4. Hilary W. Hoynes & Marianne E. Page & Ann Huff Stevens, 2009. "Is a WIC Start a Better Start? Evaluating WIC’s Impact on Infant Health Using Program Introduction," NBER Working Papers 15589, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. A. Colin Cameron & Jonah B. Gelbach & Douglas L. Miller, 2007. "Bootstrap-Based Improvements for Inference with Clustered Errors," NBER Technical Working Papers 0344, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Sonia Laszlo & Franque Grimard, 2010. "Long Term Effects Of Civil Conflict On Women'S Health Outcomes In Peru," Departmental Working Papers 2010-05, McGill University, Department of Economics.
  7. Thomas S Dee & Brian A. Jacob, 2010. "Rational Ignorance in Education: A Field Experiment in Student Plagiarism," NBER Working Papers 15672, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Anna Aizer & Laura Stroud & Stephen Buka, 2012. "Maternal Stress and Child Outcomes: Evidence from Siblings," NBER Working Papers 18422, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Case, Anne & Fertig, Angela & Paxson, Christina, 2005. "The lasting impact of childhood health and circumstance," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 365-389, March.
  10. Sharon Maccini & Dean Yang, 2009. "Under the Weather: Health, Schooling, and Economic Consequences of Early-Life Rainfall," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(3), pages 1006-26, June.
  11. Douglas Almond & Kenneth Y. Chay & David S. Lee, 2004. "The Costs of Low Birth Weight," NBER Working Papers 10552, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Lindo, Jason M., 2010. "Parental Job Loss and Infant Health," IZA Discussion Papers 5213, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. Adriana Camacho, 2008. "Stress and Birth Weight: Evidence from Terrorist Attacks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 511-15, May.
  14. David A. Jaeger & M. Daniele Paserman, 2005. "The Cycle of Violence? An Empirical Analysis of Fatalities in the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict," Working Papers 22, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary.
  15. Awad Mataria & Rita Giacaman & Angelo Stefanini & Nirmala Naidoo & Paul Kowal & Somnath Chatterji, 2009. "The quality of life of Palestinians living in chronic conflict: assessment and determinants," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 93-101, February.
  16. Jessica Cohen & Pascaline Dupas, 2010. "Free Distribution or Cost-Sharing? Evidence from a Randomized Malaria Prevention Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 125(1), pages 1-45, February.
  17. Ming-Jen Lin & Jin-Tan Liu & Shin-Yi Chou, 2007. "As Low Birth Weight Babies Grow, Can 'Good' Parents Buffer this Adverse Factor? A Research Note," NBER Working Papers 12857, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Bejenariu, Simona & Mitrut, Andreea, 2013. "Austerity Measures and Infant Health. Lessons from an Unexpected Wage Cut Policy," Working Papers in Economics 574, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  2. Richter, André & Robling, Per Olof, 2013. "Multigenerational e ffects of the 1918-19 influenza pandemic in Sweden," Working Paper Series 5/2013, Swedish Institute for Social Research.

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