Navigation Links
Prevention Is Key Research Goal for Premature Babies, Scientists Say

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., Feb. 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Family history, infection and stress all may play a role in raising a woman's risk of having a premature baby – but they don't fully explain why some women give birth too soon and others don't, according to a review article published today in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Only if scientists of all disciplines work together and share information – databases, biological samples and new perspectives – will the research community be able to determine how to prevent spontaneous preterm birth and spare babies from the serious consequences of an early birth, according to "The Enigma of Spontaneous Preterm Birth," by Louis Muglia, MD, PhD, of Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Michael Katz, MD, senior vice president for Research and Global Program at the March Dimes.

Premature birth is a leading cause of infant death in the United States, and only about half of these deaths have a known cause, Drs. Muglia and Katz note.

More than 543,000 babies are born too soon each year in the United States.  Worldwide, about 13 million babies are born prematurely each year.  Babies who survive an early birth face serious risks of lifelong health problems, including learning disabilities, cerebral palsy, blindness, hearing loss and other chronic conditions.

Medical problems, such as preeclampsia, which is extremely high blood pressure in the mother, or fetal distress, do not fully explain the increase of induced deliveries, which often result in late preterm births, birth between 32 and 36 weeks gestation.  

"The decision to induce delivery in order to improve fetal viability must be balanced by recognition of the need to minimize the impairments that arise from preterm birth," the authors wrote. "Making this decision will remain a challenge for practitioners, because inducing delivery – by whatever method – before full term has adverse consequences for the newborn, even when it happens close to term."

Family history of preterm birth, stress, race, infection, inflammation and genetics do appear to play a role.  One of every three preterm births occurs to a mother who has an infection in her uterus, but may have no symptoms. Recent research has shown that the genes of the mother seem to make the greatest contribution to preterm birth risk, and genes in the fetus may also play a role.

The New England Journal of Medicine review article is a summary of a three-day symposium held in December 2008, entitled "Preventing Prematurity: Establishing a Network for Innovation and Discovery." It was cosponsored by the Burroughs Wellcome Fund and the March of Dimes and brought together the top investigators in preterm birth prevention research.

The authors note in their article that technological advances allow clinicians to save premature infants from death and some complications by treating the consequences of prematurity. However, "prevention is what is needed, and current research is being directed toward reaching this goal," the authors wrote.

The third biennial symposium, a meeting by invitation only, will be held in December, 2010.

The article was published in the Feb. 11, 2010, issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, Vol. 362, No. 6, pages 529-35.

The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide and its premier event, March for Babies®, the March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. For the latest resources and information, visit or

SOURCE March of Dimes



SOURCE March of Dimes
Copyright©2010 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Breast cancer prevention practices vary across Canada
2. School-based overweight prevention program may cut risk of eating disorders among girls
4. Jump in Youth Suicide Prompts National Childrens Charity KidsPeace to Issue Tips on Prevention, Warning Signs
5. ABQAURP Announces Certificate Course in Medical Error Prevention
6. Scientists, physicians present latest findings in personalized cancer treatment and prevention
7. Experts Offer Tips on Lung Cancer Prevention
8. Meth Project Advertisements Selected for National Prevention Campaign
9. SAVE Recognizes National Suicide Prevention Week
10. Updated GOLD report presents new understandings in diagnosis, treatment and prevention of COPD
11. GP targets on heart disease should be simpler and based more on treatment and prevention
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... Lizzie’s Lice ... The company is offering customers 10% off of their purchase of lice treatment product. ... at full price. According to a company spokesperson. “Finding lice is a sure way ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... of the well-respected Microsoft Dynamics SL User Group (MSDSLUG). Recognized as Microsoft’s official ... independent group of Microsoft Dynamics SL software users, partners, industry experts and representatives. ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... the largest, most successful and prominent nonprofit healthcare organizations in the country. They ... involvement with various organizations, and helped advance the healthcare industry as a whole ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... Inevitably when people think Thanksgiving, they also ... buy during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday massage chair sales to ... Internet high and low to find the best massage chair deals, they can see ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... PRMA Plastic Surgery is updating their ... surgeons performed their 6,000th free flap breast reconstruction surgery! , “What an accomplishment for ... excited to rebuild lives and it’s an honor to have served all of these ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... 3D bioprinting market is expected to reach ... by Grand View Research Inc. Rising prevalence of chronic diseases ... is expected to boost the market growth, as 3D bioprinting ... --> 3D bioprinting market is expected to reach ... by Grand View Research Inc. Rising prevalence of chronic diseases ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26, 2015 ... "2016 Future Horizons and Growth Strategies ... Market: Supplier Shares, Country Segment Forecasts, Competitive ... offering. --> ) has ... Future Horizons and Growth Strategies in the ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... PUNE, India , November 26, ... --> --> ... Research Report" and "Investigation Report on ... 2019 and 2021 forecasts data and ... library. . ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: