Obstetrics & gynaecology

Premature birth linked to the mother's vaginal microbiome

Pregnant women who deliver early are more likely to have a diverse community of vaginal bacteria, finds a new study published in Frontiers in Microbiology. These findings also highlight specific bacteria associated with premature ...

Genetics

Length of pregnancy alters the child's DNA

Researchers from Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have, together with an international team, mapped the relationship between length of pregnancy and chemical DNA changes in more than 6,000 newborn babies. For each week's longer ...

Genetics

Missing link in rare inherited skin disease exposed

Hokkaido University scientists are getting closer to understanding how a rare hereditary disease impairs the skin's barrier function, which determines how well the skin is protected.

Health

California calls pot smoke, THC a risk to moms-to-be

A California panel voted Wednesday to declare marijuana smoke and the drug's high-producing chemical—THC—a risk to pregnant women and their developing fetuses and require warning labels for products legally sold in the ...

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Preterm birth

In humans, preterm birth refers to the birth of a baby of less than 37 weeks gestational age. Premature birth, commonly used as a synonym for preterm birth, refers to the birth of a premature infant. Because it is by far the most common cause of prematurity, preterm birth is the major cause of neonatal mortality in developed countries. Premature infants are at greater risk for short and long term complications, including disabilities and impediments in growth and mental development. Significant progress has been made in the care of premature infants, but not in reducing the prevalence of preterm birth. The cause for preterm birth is in many situations elusive and unknown; many factors appear to be associated with the development of preterm birth, making the reduction of preterm birth a challenging proposition.

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