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1980–1984

1985–1989

 

% Total

OR

ARtotal

% Total

OR

ARtotal

 

% Among Preterm Births

% Among Preterm Births

Factor

% Preterm

 

 

% Preterm

 

 

Multiple births

2.0

8.55

7.4

2.2

9.28

8.4

 

9.3

(8.48–8.62)

10.3

(9.21–9.34)

 

 

41.7

45.6

 

Hypertension

Diabetes

Smoking

Note: Values in parentheses indicate confidence intervals.

Figure B-18 depicts gestational age-specific infant mortality rates for births from 1995 to 2000 among white and African American U.S. resident mothers. At between 26 and 33 weeks of gestation, little difference in infant mortality is evident between the racial groups. This stands in contrast to reports from earlier time periods in the United States in which preterm African American infants were observed to have a survival advantage over white preterm infants (6, 8). At the limit of viability, African American infants continue to have a greater chance of survival. For infants born moderately preterm, term, and postterm, whites exhibit a lower infant mortality rate.

DISCUSSION

The information provided in this paper reveals an ongoing rise in the rate of preterm births in the United States and considerable geographic variation in rates across U.S. states. Furthermore, during this period of increasing preterm birth rates, the mortality risk associated with a preterm



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