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Journal of Environmental and Public Health
Volume 2017, Article ID 3479421, 8 pages
Research Article

Racial/Ethnic Differences in the Modifying Effect of Community Violence on the Association between Paternity Status and Preterm Birth

1Division of Epidemiology, Department of Family Medicine and Population Health, School of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA
2Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, School of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA
3Institute for Women’s Health, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Timothy O. Ihongbe; ude.ucv@otebgnohi

Received 2 August 2017; Revised 12 October 2017; Accepted 29 October 2017; Published 27 November 2017

Academic Editor: David Vlahov

Copyright © 2017 Timothy O. Ihongbe and Saba W. Masho. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Preterm birth (PTB) is a major public health concern in the US. Lack of established paternity has been linked with increased risk of PTB. Community violence (CV) may modify the association, and racial/ethnic differences may exist. Using a geographically defined cohort of women in Richmond, Virginia ( = 27,518), we examined racial/ethnic differences in the modifying effect of CV on the association between paternity status and PTB. Results showed that lack of established paternity was associated with incremental greater odds of PTB across CV quartiles in NH-Whites (quartile-1: AOR = 1.42, 95% CI = 0.95–2.12; quartile-2: AOR = 1.45, 95% CI = 0.57–3.71; quartile-3: AOR = 3.12, 95% CI = 2.67–6.32), NH-Blacks (quartile-1: AOR = 1.16, 95% CI = 0.85–1.58; quartile-2: AOR = 1.32, 95% CI = 0.82–2.12; quartile-3: AOR = 1.64, 95% CI = 1.24–2.16), and Hispanics (quartile-1: AOR = 1.29, 95% CI = 0.65–2.55; quartile-2: AOR = 1.34, 95% CI = 0.67–2.69). Odds of PTB were highest among NH-White women. Public health practitioners should be aware of the negative effect of lack of paternal presence on PTB in women resident in high violence rate communities and racial/ethnic differences that exist.