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Can medical malpractice lead to neonatal death?

When a mother has a baby, one of the last things she thinks will happen is that the baby will pass away. Sadly, there is a chance that the baby might pass away. If that happens in the baby's first 28 days of life, it is considered a neonatal death. There are several reasons why a neonatal death might occur. Some of these reasons might interest our Texas readers.

What is the most common cause neonatal death?

The most common cause of neonatal death is a premature birth. A premature birth is one that occurs before the 37th week of pregnancy. The earlier in the pregnancy the women delivers the baby, the more likely it is that a neonatal death will occur. While the causes of premature birth aren't fully understood, there are some key points that should be monitored.

What are the risk factors for premature birth?

There are three key factors that might lead to premature birth. These include uterine or cervical problems, multiple gestation and previous premature births. In those cases, women should be monitored closely throughout their pregnancies to see if the premature birth can be prevented.

What are the risks of having a premature baby?

We already discussed how a premature baby might pass away. These babies, especially when they are born prior to the 32nd week of pregnancy and if they weigh less than 3.33 pounds, are at risk of necrotizing enterocolitis, infections, intraventricular hemorrhage and respiratory distress syndrome. All of these must be treated promptly or they can be fatal for the baby.

Proper management of pregnancy and proper care of the newborn might be able to prevent neonatal death. Any parent who feels his or her newborn passed away because of negligent medical care might opt to seek compensation as a way to hold the medical professionals accountable for the baby's death.

Source: March of Dimes, "Neonatal Death" Dec. 29, 2014

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