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Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2009 Oct;48(8):844-50. doi: 10.1177/0009922809340432. Epub 2009 Jul 13.

Outcomes of late-preterm infants: a retrospective, single-center, Canadian study.

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  • 1Neonatology Division, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.



To study the prevalence of major morbidities and mortality of inborn, late-preterm infants. Methods. A retrospective review was conducted from 2004 to 2008. Descriptive outcomes were compared with predefined aggregate outcomes of term infants during the same period.


Data on 1193 late-preterm and 8666 term infants were compared. Majority of late-preterm infants were 36 weeks (43.6%), followed by 35 weeks (29.2%) and 34 weeks (27.2%), respectively. The prevalence of intensive care admission, respiratory support, pneumothorax, and mortality in late preterm infants was significantly higher compared with term infants. Mechanical ventilation and continuous positive airway pressure rates substantially decreased with increased gestational age. Although only 1.0% had positive cultures, 28.5% received parenteral antibiotics. The late-preterm group had a 12-fold higher risk of death with an overall mortality rate of 0.8%.


This study confirmed the high-risk status of late-preterm infants with worse mortality and morbidities compared with term infants.

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