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Journal of Perinatal Medicine

Official Journal of the World Association of Perinatal Medicine

Editor-in-Chief: Dudenhausen, MD, FRCOG, Joachim W.

Editorial Board: / Bancalari, Eduardo / Greenough, Anne / Genc, Mehmet R. / Chervenak, Frank A. / Chappelle, Joseph / Bergmann, Renate L. / Bernardes, J.F. / Bevilacqua, G. / Blickstein, Isaac / Cabero Roura, Luis / Carbonell-Estrany, Xavier / Carrera, Jose M. / D`Addario, Vincenzo / D'Alton, MD, Mary E. / Dimitrou, G. / Grunebaum, Amos / Hentschel, Roland / Köpcke, W. / Kawabata, Ichiro / Keirse, Marc J.N.C. / Kurjak M.D., Asim / Lee, Ben H. / Levene, Malcolm / Lockwood, Charles J. / Marsal, Karel / Makatsariya, Alexander / Nishida, Hiroshi / Papp, Zoltán / Pejaver, Ranjan Kumar / Pooh, Ritsuko K. / Reiss, Irwin / Romero, Roberto / Saugstad, Ola D. / Schenker, Joseph G. / Sen, Cihat / Seri, Istvan / Vetter, Klaus / Winn, Hung N. / Young, Bruce K. / Zimmermann, Roland

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Volume 36, Issue 4


Obstetric antecedents for preterm delivery

Michael M. Slattery
  • 1Rotunda Hospital, Parnell Square, Dublin 1, Ireland and Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, National University of Ireland Galway, Clinical Science Institute, University College Hospital Galway, Newcastle Road, Galway, Ireland
  • Other articles by this author:
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/ Michael Geary / John J. Morrison
  • 3Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, National University of Ireland Galway, Clinical Science Institute, University College Hospital Galway, Newcastle Road, Galway, Ireland
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  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2008-05-19 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/JPM.2008.045


Objectives: To investigate the obstetric antecedents for preterm delivery (PTD) in an Irish urban obstetric population, and to evaluate the incidence and outcome of such deliveries.

Study design: A retrospective observational study of all preterm deliveries at the Rotunda Hospital, Dublin during the six-year period 1997–2002. The findings for early preterm deliveries (EPTD) (24+0–31+6 weeks' gestation), and late preterm deliveries (LPTD) (32+0–36+6 weeks' gestation) were analyzed separately.

Results: There were 38,795 deliveries after 24 weeks' gestation or >500 g birth weight, of which 2839 (7.3%) were preterm. Of all preterm deliveries, 626 (22.1%) were EPTD and 2213 (77.9%) were LPTD, resulting in an EPTD rate of 1.6% and an LPTD rate of 5.7%. Spontaneous unexplained preterm delivery accounted for 1221 (43.0%) of preterm deliveries (PTD), and of these 213 (34%) cases were EPTD and 1008 (45.5%) LPTD. The other most frequently observed obstetric causative factors, in order of importance, were multiple gestation (676; 23.8% of PTD), hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (243; 8.6%), antepartum hemorrhage (194; 6.8%), stillbirth (105; 3.7%), intrauterine growth restriction (53; 1.9%) and preterm prelabor rupture of membranes±chorioamnionitis (32; 1.1%). There were 75 early neonatal deaths among infants born prematurely, plus 105 stillbirths, resulting in a perinatal mortality rate of 63 per 1000 for PTD (n=180), which on subsequent analysis was 158 per 1000 for EPTD (n=99) and 37 per 1000 for LPTD (n=81).

Conclusions: These data outline the obstetric factors linked to preterm delivery within a recent Irish urban obstetric population. Spontaneous idiopathic preterm labor was the principle causative factor in 43% of all preterm deliveries, and represents the proportion of women for whom future therapeutic intervention may be of benefit.

Keywords: Antecedents; delivery; etiology; labor; outcome; preterm

About the article

Corresponding author: Dr Michael M. Slattery Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology National University of Ireland Galway Clinical Science Institute University College Hospital Galway Newcastle Road Galway, Ireland Tel.: +353 87 9271313 Fax: +353 1 8092576

Received: 2007-11-07

Revised: 2008-01-29

Accepted: 2008-03-18

Published Online: 2008-05-19

Published Online: 2008-05-24

Published in Print: 2008-07-01

Citation Information: Journal of Perinatal Medicine, Volume 36, Issue 4, Pages 306–309, ISSN (Online) 1619-3997, ISSN (Print) 0300-5577, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/JPM.2008.045.

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