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Nine out of 10 women who delivered premature babies are informed of risk of stillbirth during pregnancy
Despite increases in antenatal care, only nine out of 10 women who deliver premature babies are informed of the risk of stillbirth in pregnancy, according to research published in the British Medical Journal.
Better communication could reduce stillbirth risk for women who deliver a preterm baby, say scientists from the University of Liverpool.
Preterm birth can be as devastating as being born with no heart or lungs Read more
The researchers asked mothers of more than 5,000 babies to fill in a questionnaire about information they had received about the risks of stillbirth.
Those who said the pregnancy was unplanned, were exposed to anxiety-inducing events, or that they had faced other pressures are more likely to miss out on potentially crucial information.
Women with a high risk of stillbirth, such as those who were 18 to 30, may need more support from their doctors and midwives.
Lia Leathem, from the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, said: “Over 90% of preterm birth is avoidable and much can be done to prevent deaths. We urgently need to improve our understanding of why women’s health advice is not always getting to women who need it.”
Dr Paul Kelly, from Public Health England, said: “We work closely with care partners across the UK to make sure pregnant women receive the relevant information they need, especially when the challenge of mending before the labour that will bring this baby into the world is so important.”