Early neonatal deaths with perinatal asphyxia in very low birth weight Brazilian infants.
The objective of this study was to assess the frequency of early deaths associated with birth asphyxia of very low birth weight infants between 2005 and 2010, in Brazil.
This population study enrolled all live births with birth weight from 400 to 1499 g, gestational age ? 22 weeks, without malformations that died up to 6 days after birth with perinatal asphyxia. Asphyxia was defined if intrauterine hypoxia, asphyxia at birth or meconium aspiration syndrome were written in any line of the death certificate. Active search was carried out in 27 Brazilian federative units.
For every 1000 live births of very low birth weight infants without congenital malformations, 40.25 and 32.38 died with birth asphyxia in the first week after birth, respectively, in 2005 and 2010 (P<0.001). The contribution of birth asphyxia to early neonatal death of these infants was approximately 10 to 12% all study years.
Reduction of birth asphyxia in very low birth weight infants is essential to reducing neonatal mortality in Brazil.