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Multilingual Demographic Dictionary, second unified edition, English volume

Pregnancy history

Multilingual Demographic Dictionary, second unified edition, English vol.
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Pregnancy history  (PREGNANCY history)

Fertility histories 1 or reproductive histories 1 are accounts obtained for individual women of the important events in their reproductive lives, such as marriages, pregnancies, births, infant deaths, etc., and their dates. Fertility histories are often obtained retrospectively from surveys. Family forms 1 are used in historical demography (102-1), where they are established for a married couple and its children by family reconstitution 2 on the basis of vital records (211-3). A woman’s pregnancy history 3 or pregnancy record 3 contains detailed information about her pregnancies including the date when each began and ended, and the outcome of the pregnancy. Such detailed records on the timing of fertility have been used for various purposes. For example, they can provide information on natural fertility 4, i.e., fertility in the absence of family limitation (624-4). They are also used to estimate fecundability 5, the probability of conceiving per menstrual cycle (622-2). A distinction is made between natural fecundability 6, in the absence of contraception, and residual fecundability 7 in the opposite instance. The term effective fecundability 8 designates a fecundability that is reckoned in terms of conceptions that result in live births only. The conception rate 9 during the period of exposure to risk often estimated using the Pearl index 10★ (613-1) is used to measure the effectiveness of contraception during periods of contraceptive use.

  • 1. Birth histories are usually limited to live births.
  • 6. When used alone, the word fecundability stands for natural fecundability.