The preterm birth rate in the United States continues to rise, and the long-term consequences of prematurity are innumerable. Late preterm births account for most of the rise in preterm births, and such infants have increased morbidity and mortality compared with their term counterparts. Delivery indications for late preterm births include preterm labor, maternal comorbidities (diabetes, hypertensive disorders), multiple gestations, and fetal problems (abnormal growth, amniotic fluid abnormalities). In a pregnancy with these high-risk issues, delivery timing is determined to optimize maternal and fetal health and minimize the risk for stillbirth. Labor inductions and cesarean deliveries may account for a significant proportion of late preterm births. Following guidelines established by prior studies can prevent some of these late preterm births.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health