Valerie Gommon Midwife’s Blog

Loss of a baby

Posted on: March 16, 2009

Today I am going to write about the difficult subject of pregnancy and neonatal loss.

On Friday I attended an excellent, but moving study day about the loss of a baby.

Thankfully this is rare, but it is a sad fact that not all babies will make it; our stillbirth rate is 5.5 per 1000 and this figure has remained constant since the early 1990s; this figure includes all babies that die from after the 24th week of pregnancy.

The case of every single baby that dies is confidentially investigated by The Confidential Enquiry into Maternal and Child Health (CEMACH) www.cemach.org.uk

A third of stillbirths occurred when a baby had reached full-term, and deaths are more common when mothers are under 20 or over 40 and for ethnic minority women with babies of black and Asian women being twice as likely to die and more babies are lost to women from poorer socio-economic groups, however, in over 50% of cases, we still do not know why the baby is dies.

Advances in technology mean that neonatal mortality through premature births has fallen to around 3.5% but each one is a personal tragedy.

It is important that women access antenatal care and that adequate time is given to clients.  If you are concerned about ANYTHING speak to your midwife, your doctor or call the labour ward of your local maternity unit.

If you have been affected by the loss of a baby Sands, the Stillbirth and neonatal death charity offer great support www.uk-sands.org

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