Low Birth Weight Essay

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The world health organization in 1992 defined low-birth weight as a weight at birth of less than 2500 grams, irrespective of gestational period, and recommended additional demarcation of 1500 grams to define very low birth weight. However, the information on gestational age would help to separate infants who are born premature. The birth weights may be low because the baby is born small for gestational age (SGA),as a result of intrauterine growth retardation (synonym intrauterine malnutrition) (IUGR) or because birth is preterm. In developing countries such as India, LBW babies are usually full term babies who are SGA347. The prevalence of low birth weight is highest in the South Asian region. India, the most populous country in South Asia accounts for 40 percent of low birth weight babies in the overall developing world (UNICEF 2004). In most cases, the birth-weight of babies is not measured in India because majority of births taking place outside the…show more content…
While a prevalence of 10 per cent LBW babies has been reported for the privileged high socio-economic class, nearly 56 per cent birth were classified as LBW for the poor urban slum community347. In a study conducted in slums of Kolkata, prevalence of LBW was reported as 28.6 per cent348. In Trivandrum out of 3835 singleton newborns studied for anthropometric indices at birth, 15 per cent were low-birth weight. Mean birth weight increased with increases in maternal socioeconomic status 349. CAUSES OF LOW BIRTH WEIGHT Although pre-term deliveries and intra-uterine growth retardation (IUGR) are the usual causes of small-for-age infants, individual size differences among newborns who are neither growth-retarded nor preterm have also been

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