Maternal smoking during pregnancy and long-term ophthalmic morbidity of the offspring

Erez Tsumi, Yotam Lavy, Tamar Wainstock, Chiya Barrett, Ahed Imtirat, Eyal Sheiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: To examine whether smoking during pregnancy is correlated with long-term ophthalmic complications of the offspring. Study design: A population-based cohort analysis was performed comparing all deliveries of mothers who reported smoking during pregnancy and non-smoking mothers between 1991 and 2014 at a single tertiary medical center. Hospitalizations of the offspring up to the age of 18 years involving ophthalmic morbidities were evaluated according to a predefined set of ICD-9 codes. A Kaplan-Meier curve was used to compare cumulative hospitalization rate in exposed and unexposed offspring and a Cox proportional hazards model was used to control for confounders. Results: During the study period, 243,680 deliveries met the inclusion criteria. Of them, 2965 (1.2%) were children of smoking mothers. Ophthalmic-related hospitalizations were significantly higher in children born to smoking mothers, as compared with the non-smoking group (1.4% vs. 0.1%, p < 0.01). Specifically, these hospitalizations were due to higher rates of visual disturbance rate and ophthalmic infections. The Kaplan-Meier curve demonstrated a significant higher cumulative incidence of ophthalmic-related hospitalizations in the smoking group (log rank p < 0.001). Using a Cox proportional hazards model, controlling for potential confounders, maternal tobacco use was found to be independently associated with long-term ophthalmic morbidity of the offspring (adjusted HR = 1.51, CI 1.11–2.04). Conclusion: Maternal smoking during pregnancy is an independent risk factor for long-term ophthalmic morbidity of the offspring. These results are in line with many recent studies that strongly support maternal smoking cessation during pregnancy due to high offspring morbidity risk.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105489
JournalEarly Human Development
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2021


  • Intrauterine exposure
  • Maternal smoking during pregnancy
  • Pediatric ophthalmic morbidity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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