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Short Interpregnancy Intervals

An Evidence-Based Guide for Clinicians

Bigelow, Catherine A. MD*†; Bryant, Allison S. MD, MPH

Obstetrical & Gynecological Survey: July 2015 - Volume 70 - Issue 7 - p 458–464
doi: 10.1097/OGX.0000000000000195
CME ARTICLES
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CME

The interpregnancy interval (IPI) is the period of time between one birth outcome (live birth, miscarriage, stillbirth, or abortion) and conception of a subsequent pregnancy. Short IPI has been associated with obstetric, fetal, and maternal morbidity. While the literature has largely supported an ideal IPI of 18 to 23 months after live birth to minimize morbidity in a subsequent pregnancy, there are few references that can guide clinicians counseling patients about IPI after other pregnancy outcomes. In this article, we attempt to review, synthesize, and provide evidence-based IPI recommendations using the available literature.

Target Audience Obstetricians and gynecologists, family physicians

Learning Objectives After completing this activity, the learner will be better able to discuss the definition of the interpregnancy interval, identify risk factors for short interpregnancy intervals, and interpret the available evidence for perinatal and maternal morbidity associated with short interpregnancy intervals.

*Vincent Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Massachusetts General Hospital; and †Clinical Fellow and ‡Assistant Professor, Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA

All authors and staff in a position to control the content of this CME activity and their spouses/life partners (if any) have disclosed that they have no financial relationships with, or financial interests in, any commercial organizations pertaining to this educational activity.

Correspondence requests to: Catherine A. Bigelow, MD, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Massachusetts General Hospital, 75 Francis St, Boston, MA 02115. E-mail: cbigelow@partners.org.

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