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Concept: Live birth


To determine the risks of stillbirth and neonatal complications by gestational age in uncomplicated monochorionic and dichorionic twin pregnancies.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Embryo, Fetus, Obstetrics, Live birth


What are the long term trends in the total (live births, fetal deaths, and terminations of pregnancy for fetal anomaly) and live birth prevalence of neural tube defects (NTD) in Europe, where many countries have issued recommendations for folic acid supplementation but a policy for mandatory folic acid fortification of food does not exist?

Concepts: Pregnancy, Demography, Obstetrics, Abortion, Folic acid, Gestational age, Spina bifida, Live birth


We examined the association of maternal obesity with risk of stillbirth, focusing on whether the pattern of results varied by gestational age or maternal race-ethnicity or parity.

Concepts: Demography, Obstetrics, Live birth


Objectives To estimate small for gestational age birth prevalence and attributable neonatal mortality in low and middle income countries with the INTERGROWTH-21(st) birth weight standard.Design Secondary analysis of data from the Child Health Epidemiology Reference Group (CHERG), including 14 birth cohorts with gestational age, birth weight, and neonatal follow-up. Small for gestational age was defined as infants weighing less than the 10th centile birth weight for gestational age and sex with the multiethnic, INTERGROWTH-21(st) birth weight standard. Prevalence of small for gestational age and neonatal mortality risk ratios were calculated and pooled among these datasets at the regional level. With available national level data, prevalence of small for gestational age and population attributable fractions of neonatal mortality attributable to small for gestational age were estimated.Setting CHERG birth cohorts from 14 population based sites in low and middle income countries.Main outcome measures In low and middle income countries in the year 2012, the number and proportion of infants born small for gestational age; number and proportion of neonatal deaths attributable to small for gestational age; the number and proportion of neonatal deaths that could be prevented by reducing the prevalence of small for gestational age to 10%.Results In 2012, an estimated 23.3 million infants (uncertainty range 17.6 to 31.9; 19.3% of live births) were born small for gestational age in low and middle income countries. Among these, 11.2 million (0.8 to 15.8) were term and not low birth weight (≥2500 g), 10.7 million (7.6 to 15.0) were term and low birth weight (<2500 g) and 1.5 million (0.9 to 2.6) were preterm. In low and middle income countries, an estimated 606 500 (495 000 to 773 000) neonatal deaths were attributable to infants born small for gestational age, 21.9% of all neonatal deaths. The largest burden was in South Asia, where the prevalence was the highest (34%); about 26% of neonatal deaths were attributable to infants born small for gestational age. Reduction of the prevalence of small for gestational age from 19.3% to 10.0% in these countries could reduce neonatal deaths by 9.2% (254 600 neonatal deaths; 164 800 to 449 700).Conclusions In low and middle income countries, about one in five infants are born small for gestational age, and one in four neonatal deaths are among such infants. Increased efforts are required to improve the quality of care for and survival of these high risk infants in low and middle income countries.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Childbirth, Death, Fetus, Demography, Obstetrics, Pediatrics, Live birth


Background Progesterone is essential for the maintenance of pregnancy. However, whether progesterone supplementation in the first trimester of pregnancy would increase the rate of live births among women with a history of unexplained recurrent miscarriages is uncertain. Methods We conducted a multicenter, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial to investigate whether treatment with progesterone would increase the rates of live births and newborn survival among women with unexplained recurrent miscarriage. We randomly assigned women with recurrent miscarriages to receive twice-daily vaginal suppositories containing either 400 mg of micronized progesterone or matched placebo from a time soon after a positive urinary pregnancy test (and no later than 6 weeks of gestation) through 12 weeks of gestation. The primary outcome was live birth after 24 weeks of gestation. Results A total of 1568 women were assessed for eligibility, and 836 of these women who conceived naturally within 1 year and remained willing to participate in the trial were randomly assigned to receive either progesterone (404 women) or placebo (432 women). The follow-up rate for the primary outcome was 98.8% (826 of 836 women). In an intention-to-treat analysis, the rate of live births was 65.8% (262 of 398 women) in the progesterone group and 63.3% (271 of 428 women) in the placebo group (relative rate, 1.04; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.94 to 1.15; rate difference, 2.5 percentage points; 95% CI, -4.0 to 9.0). There were no significant between-group differences in the rate of adverse events. Conclusions Progesterone therapy in the first trimester of pregnancy did not result in a significantly higher rate of live births among women with a history of unexplained recurrent miscarriages. (Funded by the United Kingdom National Institute of Health Research; PROMISE Current Controlled Trials number, ISRCTN92644181 .).

Concepts: Pregnancy, Childbirth, Obstetrics, Abortion, Miscarriage, Human chorionic gonadotropin, Gestational age, Live birth


Experiencing a stillbirth can be a potent stressor for psychological distress in the subsequent pregnancy and possibly after the subsequent birth. The impact on women’s relationship with her partner in the subsequent pregnancy and postpartum remains uncertain. The objectives of the study were 1) To investigate the prevalence of anxiety and depression in the pregnancy following stillbirth and assess gestational age at stillbirth and inter-pregnancy interval as individual risk factors. 2) To assess the course of anxiety, depression and satisfaction with partner relationship up to 3 years after the birth of a live-born baby following stillbirth.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Childbirth, Embryo, Fetus, Risk, Obstetrics, Gestational age, Live birth


To report maternal sleep practices in women who experienced a stillbirth compared with controls with ongoing live pregnancies at similar gestation.

Concepts: Childbirth, Obstetrics, Abortion, Case-control study, Live birth



In 2013, the stillbirth rate in the UK was 4.2 per 1000 live births, ranking 24th out of 49 high-income countries, with an annual rate of reduction of only 1.4% per year. The majority of stillbirths occur in normally formed infants, with (retrospective) evidence of placental insufficiency the most common clinical finding. Maternal perception of reduced fetal movements (RFM) is associated with placental insufficiency and increased risk of subsequent stillbirth.This study will test the hypothesis that the introduction of a package of care to increase women’s awareness of the need for prompt reporting of RFM and standardised management to identify fetal compromise with timely delivery in confirmed cases, will reduce the rate of stillbirth. Following the introduction of a similar intervention in Norway the odds of stillbirth fell by 30%, but the efficacy of this intervention (and possible adverse effects and implications for service delivery) has not been tested in a randomised trial.

Concepts: Childbirth, Infant, Randomized controlled trial, Abortion, Stillbirth, Live birth


Cerebral palsy describes the most common physical disability in childhood and occurs in 1 in 500 live births. Historically, the diagnosis has been made between age 12 and 24 months but now can be made before 6 months' corrected age.

Concepts: Schizophrenia, Cerebral palsy, Disability, Physical examination, Live birth