Intended for healthcare professionals

Research Article

Prognosis for infants born at 23 to 28 weeks' gestation.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1986; 293 doi: (Published 08 November 1986) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1986;293:1200
  1. V Y Yu,
  2. H L Loke,
  3. B Bajuk,
  4. W Szymonowicz,
  5. A A Orgill,
  6. J Astbury


    The survival and neurodevelopmental outcome of 356 extremely preterm infants born at 23 to 28 weeks' gestation were reported by week of gestation. Their corrected 1 year survival improved from 7% at 23 weeks to 75% at 28 weeks. The overall incidence of impairment was 19% and of major disability 12%. Boys had a significantly lower normal survival than girls. Multiple births had a significantly lower survival and higher incidence of impairment than singleton births. Predictions of outcome were made before delivery, after resuscitation, and at 1 week to aid the development of guidelines on when perinatal intensive care is justified, whether obstetric intervention for fetal reasons is warranted, and what initial and ongoing prognoses to give to parents. Intensive care for progressively smaller and more immature infants, many of whom were previously considered non-viable, needs to be carefully monitored by every perinatal centre.