Research Article

Late morbidity of very low birthweight infants.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985; 291 doi: (Published 20 July 1985) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985;291:171
  1. M E Imogen Morgan


    The use of hospitals in the first year after term was studied in a geographically based group of 111 very low birthweight infants in Liverpool. This was compared with that of 216 term infants without perinatal complications. Of the group with very low birth weight, 59 (53%) were readmitted, with three deaths, compared with 21 (10%) of the term infants. Of the admissions, 67 (40%) related to sequels of neonatal illness or its management. The admissions were repeated and of long duration, resulting in a 16-fold increased load of inpatients, an eightfold increase in surgical procedures, and a twofold increase in attendance by outpatients at the local children's hospitals compared with the term group. This population of infants after intensive care represented a high risk group with specific problems and requirements in infancy, even when problems were not apparent at discharge from the neonatal unit.