Causes of death in infants admitted to Australian neonatal intensive care units between 1995 and 2006

Yvonne Feng, Mohamed E. Abdel-Latif, Barbara Bajuk, Kei Lui, Ju Lee Oei*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    11 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Aim To compare causes and rates of mortality among infants admitted to 10 Australian neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) between 1995 and 2006. Methods: De-identified perinatal data from the Neonatal Intensive Care Units' (NICUS) Data Collection for 24131 infants were examined for causes and rates of death. The study period was divided into two epochs: I (1995-2000, n=11185 infants) and II (2001-2006, n=12946 infants). Results: A total of 2224 (9.2%) infants died in hospital. Mortality decreased from 10.3% (1152/11185) in epoch I to 8.3% (1072/12946) in epoch II (p<0.001) due to improved survival in term infants. Extreme prematurity also decreased as a primary cause of death (118 (10.2%) vs 76 (7.1%), p=0.008). No infant >42-week gestation was admitted in epoch II. Congenital abnormalities were the most common cause of death (>20%) in both epochs, mostly in term rather than preterm infants (40.7% vs 13.9%, p<0.001). Age of death was unchanged between the two epochs (median 4, 1st, 3rd quartiles: 1,16days). Conclusion: Mortality rates have continued to decrease but improvement is predominantly due to improved survival of term infants and prevention of postdate deliveries. Congenital abnormalities continue to be the most common cause of death.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)e17-e23
    JournalActa Paediatrica, International Journal of Paediatrics
    Volume102
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2013

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