Short Women, Short Pregnancy: Do Short Women Have Shorter Pregnancies?

You know what they say, short women, short pregnancy. Ladies, Are you below the average height of 5 foot 5? Have you ever miscarried? You may just be TOO SHORT to conceive children! A new study shows that a woman’s height may be closely related to preterm birth.

The Short Women Pregnancy Study

The study included 3,500 women & their babies. Researchers discovered after recording data based on the length of each woman’s pregnancy, shorter mothers had shorter pregnancies, smaller babies and a higher risk for preterm birth. “Preterm birth, which takes place before 37 weeks of pregnancy, is the leading cause of death of newborns in the United States, where more than 450,000 babies are born early each year,” said Robert Preidt, writer for HealthDay News. All short women are not affected by preterm birth; the study identified a relationship between short stature and preterm birth.

Preterm Birth

The height of a woman determines gestational length, separate from the genes she passes on to the fetus determining height. According to, “Worldwide, 15 million babies are born preterm, and more than one million die due to complications of an early birth. Babies who survive an early birth face serious and lifelong health problems, including breathing problems, jaundice, vision loss, cerebral palsy and intellectual delays.” 1 million of the 15 million babies born preterm each year dies.

“If a woman is more aware of what might be awaiting her if she is short, then she might choose to get pregnant sooner in life,” said Jeanne Rose, writer at the Gazette Review. If short women chose to get pregnant earlier in their life they can lower the amount of pregnancy risks Common examples of birth complications after a premature birth include “delivering a baby with mental handicaps or other physical handicaps.”

What’s Next

The reason behind why a woman’s height is directly related to her pregnancy has yet to be identified. “The explanation for why this happens is unclear but could depend not only on unknown genes but also on woman’s lifetime of nutrition and her environment,” said Louis Muglia, MD, PhD, the primary investigator of the Ohio Collaborative, and co-director of the Perinatal Institute at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. March of Dimes, the organization conducting this research, is raising $75 million for their five prematurity research centers to discover the reasoning for this issue.

Can’t have a baby because of height? MUSIO doesn’t discriminate!: