Spontaneous preterm birth (PTB) includes preterm labor, preterm rupture of membranes and cervical insufficiency <37 weeks of gestation. The PTB rate has significantly increased during the last 2 decades. According to the CDC, PTB rates decreased from 2007 to 2014, partly due to fewer teens and young women giving birth. However, the PTB rate rose for the fifth year in a row in 2019 and sits at approximately 10%. Unfortunately, racial, and ethnic differences in PTB rates remain problematic. The CDC reports that “in 2019, the rate of preterm birth among non-Hispanic black women (14.4%) was about 50% higher than the rate of preterm birth among non-Hispanic white women (9.3%) or Hispanic women (10%).”
Adverse Outcomes and Preterm Birth
The rate of neonatal adverse outcomes decreases with advancing gestational age
While adverse outcomes are therefore greatest <34 weeks (early preterm), higher rates of both short- and long-term complications are seen between 34w0d an 36w6d (late preterm) vs ≥37 weeks
The CDC reported that in 2018, preterm birth and low birth weight accounted for about 17% of infant deaths <1 year
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