UMass Chan Medical School Faculty Publications


Patient report of guideline-congruent gestational weight gain advice from prenatal care providers: differences by prepregnancy BMI

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Quantitative Health Sciences; Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology; Department of Medicine, Division of Behavioral and Preventive Medicine; Senior Scholars Program; UMass Worcester Prevention Research Center

Publication Date


Document Type



Adult; Body Mass Index; Cohort Studies; Counseling; Female; Guideline Adherence; Humans; *Obesity; Overweight; Pregnancy; *Pregnancy Complications; Prenatal Care; Prospective Studies; *Self Report; *Weight Gain; Young Adult


Maternal and Child Health | Obstetrics and Gynecology | Preventive Medicine | Women's Health


BACKGROUND: Prenatal care provider weight gain advice consistent with the Institute of Medicine recommendations is related to guideline-adherent gestational weight gain (GWG), yet many women may not receive guideline-congruent advice. We examined pregnant women's recall of prenatal care provider GWG advice in relation to prepregnancy body mass index (BMI).

METHODS: We conducted a prospective cohort study of women (n = 149) receiving prenatal care for a singleton pregnancy at a large academic medical center in 2010. Data were collected via a survey during late pregnancy and medical record abstraction.

RESULTS: Thirty-three percent of women did not recall receiving the provider GWG advice; 33 percent recalled advice consistent with 2009 Institute of Medicine recommendations. Recalled advice differed by prepregnancy BMI; 29 percent of normal weight, 26 percent of overweight, and 45 percent of obese women reported not receiving advice, and 6, 37, and 39 percent, respectively, recalled advice exceeding Institute of Medicine recommendations. Among the 62 percent who recalled that their provider had labeled their prepregnancy BMI, 100 percent of normal weight, 32 percent of overweight, and 23 percent of obese women recalled the labels "normal weight," "overweight," and "obese," respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: Helping providers give their patients memorable and guideline-consistent GWG advice is an actionable step toward preventing excessive GWG and associated maternal and child health consequences.

DOI of Published Version



Birth. 2014 Dec;41(4):353-9. doi: 10.1111/birt.12131. Epub 2014 Sep 3. Link to article on publisher's site


Katharine Barnes participated in this study as a medical student as part of the Senior Scholars research program at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Birth (Berkeley, Calif.)

PubMed ID