Information

Information

Reproductive outcomes include disorders that occur as a result of poor reproductive health. Low birth weight, preterm birth, reduced fertility, infertility and infant mortality are a few examples. Reproduction is the result of a complex process. Many factors can interfere, including environmental exposures such as tobacco smoke and high levels of mercury in fish. Still many questions remain unanswered. Environmental contaminants may be especially toxic to the developing fetus. A healthy diet, not smoking, exercise and regular check-ups with a health care provider for both men and women can help prevent poor reproductive outcomes.

The following pages have more information about specific reproductive outcomes.  The reproductive outcomes with the New Item image had data added in March 2012.

Information and Resources
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  • What is reproductive health?
    • Reproductive health refers to the diseases, disorders and conditions that affect the functioning of the male and female reproductive systems during reproductive age.

      Reproductive health is influenced by many factors. These include your age, lifestyle, habits, genetics, use of medicines and exposure to chemicals in the environment.

  • What are reproductive outcomes?
    • Reproductive outcomes, also called reproductive health outcomes, include disorders that occur as a result of poor reproductive health including birth defects, developmental disorders, fetal growth restriction, low birth weight, preterm birth, reduced fertility/infertility, impotence, and menstrual disorders.

  • What is WI EPHT focusing on within reproductive outcomes?
    • The WI EPHT program is tracking certain outcomes and measures of reproductive health because causes of these outcomes may be related to the environment. The select measures are shown in the table below.

    • Birth Rate 
      Fertility and Infertility

    • Infant Mortality 
      Low Birth Weight

    • Prematurity

    • Sex Ratio


    • Outcomes Measures
      Birth Rate Total Singleton Birth Rate
      Total Birth Rate
      Singleton Birth Count
      Fertility and Infertility Total fertility rate
      Infant mortality

       

      Infant mortality rate (death before 365 days of age)
      Postneonatal mortality rate (death from 28 to 364 days)
      Neonatal mortality rate (death before 28 days of age)
      Perinatal mortality rate (death before 7 days of age to 28 weeks gestation)
      Low birth weight Percent low birth weight (<2500 grams) births among term singleton live born births
      Percent very low birth weight (<1500 grams) births among term singleton live born births
      Prematurity

       

      Percent of preterm (<37 weeks gestation) births among singleton live born infants
      Percent of very preterm (<32 weeks gestation) births among singleton live born infants

       

      Sex Ratio Sex Ratio at Birth

      The WI EPHT chose these categories because research has shown that exposure to environmental contaminants may hurt your reproductive health, but the exact causes remain uncertain. The reproductive outcome measures on this website are only a few of the many potential measures that could be tracked. The data used to develop these measures are from the State of Wisconsin's birth and death files (Vital Records).

  • How are reproductive outcomes related to environmental health?
    • The WI EPHT examines various measures of birth outcomes and infant deaths to explore changes in reproductive health outcomes over time and place. Examining these trends may provide some clues about how environmental factors may impact reproductive health.

      Reproduction is the result of a very complex process. Exposure to chemicals in the environment can impact the ability to have babies, and proper growth and development in babies before and after they are born. Also, environmental contaminants may be especially toxic to growing babies while they are still in their mother’s uterus, by crossing the placenta a nd making their way into the developing fetus. An example is mercury exposure which has been linked to birth defects and neurological disorders in children born to mothers who ate large amounts of mercury contaminated fish. Other environmental exposures occur through risks in behaviors, lifestyles, and conditions, such as smoking, substance abuse, poor nutrition, lack of prenatal care, medical problems, and chronic illness.

      Both the male and female reproductive systems play a role in pregnancy. Problems with these systems can affect fertility and the ability to have children. Reproductive problems occur in men and women.

      The case of Diethylstilbestrol (DES) revealed exposure to toxic chemicals during pregnancy can have multi-generational impacts on reproduction. DES is a drug once prescribed during pregnancy to prevent miscarriages or premature deliveries. In the U.S. an estimated 5 to 10 million persons were exposed to DES from 1938 to 1971, including pregnant women prescribed DES and their children. In 1971, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advised physicians to stop prescribing DES. While the effects of some environmental exposures are known, many questions remain unanswered.

All external hyperlinks are provided for your information and for the benefit of the general public. The Department of Health Services does not testify to, sponsor, or endorse the accuracy of the information provided on externally linked pages.

Last Revised: January 28, 2014

Data

Data Query

The WI EPHT online database has reproductive outcomes data available in the categories shown below. Review the Data Details below to learn about interpreting the data.

Data Details

What is the data source?

The website provides data from the statistical resident birth and death files, maintained by the Wisconsin Vital Statistics Records Office, Wisconsin Department of Health Services. This office also provides reproductive outcomes data on the Wisconsin Interactive Statistics on Health.

How does WI EPHT measure reproductive outcomes?

The WI EPHT website includes the following measures:

  • Annual percent of singleton premature babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual count of singleton premature babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual percent of singleton very premature babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual count of singleton very premature babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual percent of low birth weight babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual percent of singleton low birth weight babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual birth rate per 1,000 babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual infant mortality rate per 1,000 babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual perinatal mortality rate per 1,000 babies by state
    • Annual perinatal mortality counts by state
    • Multi-year neonatal mortality rate per 1,000 babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Multi-year neonatal mortality count of babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual neonatal mortality rate per 1,000 babies by state
    • Annual neonatal mortality count of babies by state
    • Multi-year post-neonatal mortality rate per 1,000 babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Multi-year post-neonatal mortality count of babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual post-neonatal mortality rate per 1,000 babies by state
    • Annual post-neonatal mortality count of babies by state
    • Annual singleton birth count by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual singleton birth rate per 1,000 babies by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual total birth count by state by gender by age by race
    • Annual total fertility rate by state
    • Annual singleton sex ratio by state

    • Annual percent of low birth weight babies by county
    • Annual percent of singleton low birth weight babies by county
    • Annual percent of singleton premature babies by county
    • Annual count of singleton premature babies by county
    • Annual percent of singleton very premature babies by county
    • Annual count of singleton very premature babies by county
    • Annual birth rate per 1,000 babies by county
    • Annual singleton birth count by county
    • Annual singleton birth rate per 1,000 babies by county
    • Annual total birth count by county
    • Annual total fertility rate by county
    • Multiple years of infant mortality rate per 1,000 babie by county
    • Multiple years of infant mortality count by county
    • Multiple years of perinatal mortality rate per 1,000 babies by county
    • Multiple years of perinatal mortality counts by county
    • Multiple years of neonatal mortality rate per 1,000 babies by county
    • Multiple years of neonatal mortality counts by county
    • Multiple years of post-neonatal mortality rate per 1,000 babies by county
    • Multiple years of post-neonatal mortality counts by county
    • Annual singleton sex ratio by county
  • What are some considerations for interpreting the data?

    While significant effort is made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the data, there are limitations that are listed below:

    • There are cooperative exchange procedures in place to help ensure data are included for Wisconsin residents born in other states, but it is possible not all other states have provided complete information at the time this report was created. The numbers are likely quite small, and thus the incompleteness probably has limited impact on the measures provided from the EPHT program.
    • The measures are based on responses recorded on the birth certificate. There is not separate reporting specific to these reproductive outcomes.

    There are many factors that can contribute to a disease and should be considered when interpreting the data. Some of these include:

    • Demographics, e.g., race, gender, age
    • Socioeconomic Status, e.g., income level, education
    • Geographic, e.g., urban vs. rural
    • Changes in the medical field, e.g., diagnosis patterns, reporting requirements
    • Individual behavior, e.g., diet, smoking