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INFECTIONS AND PREMATURITY, IMPORTANT RISK FACTORS FOR NEONATAL MORBIDITY AND MORTALITY
Infant mortality is a major problem in developing countries and, unfortunately, this is the case of our country as well, given that Romania ranks first in the European Union in this respect, with an infant mortality rate of 9 ‰, compared to an average of roughly 4 ‰. Worldwide, over 15 million babies are born prematurely each year and, out of these, more than a million die due to prematurity and infections, which are the main risk factors for neonatal mortality. The risk of infection is several times higher in preterm newborns than in full-term newborns – about 80% of neonatal infections occur in premature infants. A significant proportion of the survivors of prematurity will have important neurological sequelae because of neonatal infections as well as of intracerebral bleeding or hypoxia at birth. Continuing medical education in both the general population and the medical sector is crucial in preventing premature births and neonatal infections and, consequently, in decreasing infant morbidity and mortality rates in our country.
Keywords: neonatal infections, prematurity, morbidity, infant mortality
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