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Association between alcohol consumption during pregnancy and hypertensive disorders of pregnancy in Japan: the Japan Environment and Children’s Study


This study examined the association between maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy and hypertensive disorders of pregnancy in the Japan Environment and Children’s Study, a nationwide birth cohort study. A total of 76 940 pregnant women were included in the analysis. Information about alcohol consumption during pregnancy was obtained using two questionnaires: T1 and T2. The mean (standard deviation) gestational age in the T1 and T2 questionnaires were 16.5 (5.8) and 27.9 (3.7) weeks, respectively. Alcohol consumption was considered as an exposure, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy as an outcome, and possible confounding factors were included in a generalized linear mixed-effects model with a logit link function. Among the study subjects, 2 348 (3.1%) women developed hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. Compared with 25 300 women who never drank alcohol, 43 women who drank alcohol according to the T1 questionnaire and continued to drink ≥150 g ethanol/week according to the T2 questionnaire had significantly higher odds of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. The adjusted odds ratio was 3.98 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.33–11.9). In conclusion, alcohol consumption of ≥150 g ethanol/week during pregnancy is better avoided because of the high odds of developing hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. It may be meaningful that healthcare providers confirm information about alcohol consumption during pregnancy. Moreover, discontinuation of alcohol consumption is recommended to prevent the onset of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy in Japan.

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We would like to acknowledge the following members of the Japan Environment and Children’s Study as of 2017 (principal investigator, Toshihiro Kawamoto): Hirohisa Saito (National Center for Child Health and Development, Tokyo, Japan), Reiko Kishi (Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan), Nobuo Yaegashi (Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan), Koichi Hashimoto (Fukushima Medical University, Fukushima, Japan), Chisato Mori (Chiba University, Chiba, Japan), Shuichi Ito (Yokohama City University, Yokohama, Japan), Zentaro Yamagata (University of Yamanashi, Chuo, Japan), Hidekuni Inadera (University of Toyama, Toyama, Japan), Michihiro Kamijima (Nagoya City University, Nagoya, Japan), Takeo Nakayama (Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan), Hiroyasu Iso (Osaka University, Suita, Japan), Masayuki Shima (Hyogo College of Medicine, Nishinomiya, Japan), Yasuaki Hirooka (Tottori University, Yonago, Japan), Narufumi Suganuma (Kochi University, Nankoku, Japan), Koichi Kusuhara (University of Occupational and Environmental Health, Kitakyushu, Japan), and Takahiko Katoh (Kumamoto University, Kumamoto, Japan).


The Japan Environment and Children’s Study was funded by the Ministry of the Environment, Japan. The findings and conclusions of this article are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not represent the official views of the above government.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Correspondence to Noriyuki Iwama.

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  • Alcohol
  • Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy
  • Pregnancy
Fig. 1