(HealthDay)—The risk of having no or only one child is elevated for women with an unfavorable prepregnancy lipid profile, according to a study published in the June issue of BMJ Open.

Aleksandra Pirnat, from the University of Bergen in Norway, and colleagues conducted a prospective, population-based cohort study using data for 2,645 women giving birth to their first child during 1994 to 2003 (488 one-child mothers and 2,157 women with two or more births) and 1,677 nulliparous women.

The researchers observed an association for higher prepregnancy triglyceride (TG) and TG to high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (TG:HDL-c) ratio levels with increased risk of one lifetime pregnancy, compared with having two or more children. The risk of one lifetime pregnancy was increased for women in the lowest versus the highest quintile of HDL-c levels (odds ratio, 1.7; 95 percent interval, 1.2 to 2.4) and for with the highest versus the lowest low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, TG, and TG:HDL-c ratio quintiles (odds ratios, 1.2 [95 percent confidence interval, 0.8 to 1.7]; 2.2 [95 percent confidence interval, 1.5 to 3.2]; and 2.2 [95 percent confidence interval, 1.5 to 3.2], respectively). Women with a ≥25 kg/m² and the highest LDL and total cholesterol levels had similar effects in risk of lifetime nulliparity.

"These findings substantiate an association between prepregnant serum lipid levels and number of children," the authors write.

More information: Abstract/Full Text

Journal information: BMJ Open