CMR News Bulletins

National Birth Defects Prevention Study

About the Study....

The National Birth Defects Prevention Study is a nationwide effort to discover birth defects' causes. Nine birth defect programs designated as "Centers for Birth Defects Research and Prevention" are located throughout the country. They are in Arkansas, California, Georgia, Iowa, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, Texas and Utah. Many different types of birth defects are being studied. The study will look at a large group of women which will enable the findings to be applied to "the average woman", rather than any specific individual. We may uncover risk factors that contribute to birth defects, protective factors that lower the chances of having a birth defect, or neutral factors that neither raise nor lower the risk. The findings will be published in medical journals and may also be used in health education material.

In New York...

  • Case ascertainment is taking place in two areas of New York State: the lower Hudson Valley region and the Western New York region, including Buffalo.
  • Cases are located through the areas' hospitals which have obstetrical services, perinatologists, genetic centers, obstetricians, midwives and prenatal clinics. The project specialist is responsible for ascertaining the cases at these data sources, screening them to insure case criteria are met, and reviewing the records.
  • Controls are randomly selected from births without major malformations.
  • In order to obtain detailed history beyond what is generally available through records, the participation in an interview process is requested of a select number of women. The physician or caregiver of the selected case is contacted by mail to inform them of the desire to interview his/her patient. A brochure is made available to the patient for her review to enable her to make an informed decision regarding participation in the interview. The standardized interview includes