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UMN research: Nearly 4 percent of US babies born before full-term without medical reason
Date:6/20/2014

h at smaller-volume hospitals

"There are misunderstandings about when a baby is ready to be born," said Kozhimannil. "Since our findings show there are differences in who is having an early elective delivery, the importance of a full-term birth needs to be communicated to all women, not just those who may traditionally be considered high risk for elective procedure or high risk for poor outcomes."

Kozhimannil explained that contrary to the commonly-held belief that babies born after 37 weeks are considered "term," the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine say a pregnancy is full term only after 39 weeks.

The study found that infants born by early elective cesareans were 60 percent more likely to stay longer in the hospital and more than twice as likely to have respiratory distress compared to infants born on or after 39 weeks. Infants born via early elective induction were also more likely to stay in the hospital longer than expected.

"While prior work has shown that early elective delivery policies can be highly effective within particular healthcare systems, there is a need to address this issue at the population level," said Kozhimannil. "It is our hope that this study will add fuel to the ongoing efforts to educate pregnant women and influence clinical and policy environments to facilitate healthy, full-term deliveries whenever possible."


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Contact: Miranda Taylor
tayl0551@umn.edu
612-626-2767
University of Minnesota Academic Health Center
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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