CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Geburtshilfe Frauenheilkd 2018; 78(07): 684-689
DOI: 10.1055/a-0633-1720
GebFra Science
Original Article/Originalarbeit
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Ramadan Observance during Pregnancy in Germany: a Challenge for Prenatal Care

Article in several languages: English | deutsch
Birgit Leimer*
1  Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Mainz, Germany
2  Goethe University Frankfurt am Main, GSEFM, Frankfurt am Main, Germany
,
Fabienne Pradella*
1  Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Mainz, Germany
,
Anja Fruth
3  University Medical Center of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Mainz, Germany
,
Annette Queißer
3  University Medical Center of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Mainz, Germany
,
Reyn van Ewijk
1  Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Mainz, Germany
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

received 16 January 2018
revised 25 April 2018

accepted 04 May 2018

Publication Date:
25 July 2018 (online)

  

Abstract

Introduction Fasting during Ramadan while pregnant has been shown to have long-term negative effects on the offspringʼs physical and cognitive health. Even though most Muslims do not believe pregnant women are obligated to fast during Ramadan, fasting rates of up to 87% have been reported for pregnant women. No data exists to date about Ramadan adherence and behavior in Germany.

Methods The Mainz Study of Ramadan and Pregnancy surveyed pregnant Muslims and new Muslim mothers in Mainz between October 2016 and January 2017 and collected information on Ramadan adherence and behavior. We also collected data on personal characteristics and opinions, to identify determinants of fasting using statistical analysis.

Results We found that 43% of pregnant Muslim women fasted at least one day during Ramadan 2016. Women who fasted were significantly younger and less educated. There was no significant difference in terms of country of origin between those women who fasted and those who did not. Only 49% of women who fasted and 38% of women who did not fast discussed their Ramadan behavior with their doctor. Less than 2% of women reported being proactively approached by their doctor.

Conclusion To ensure that pregnant Muslim women living in Germany can make their fasting decision based on objective information, it is necessary to raise awareness about Ramadan fasting during pregnancy among medical professionals in Germany.

* Birgit Leimer and Fabienne Pradella contributed equally to this study.