About Preterm Birth (PTB)
Learn more about preterm birth, why it happens, it’s influence on future pregnancies, and what it means for you.
Preterm birth is a birth that happens too early, before 37 completed weeks of pregnancy (more than 3 weeks before the due date).
It’s common. In the United States, 1 in 8 babies is born preterm.
It’s dangerous. Preterm babies ‘preemies’ are born before their organs and systems have time to be completely matureor functional. Even preemies that receive the best medical care in Newborn Intensive Care Units (NICUs) are at risk for long-term problems that can last a lifetime. Preemies that survive are at higher risk of cerebral palsy, developmental delay (mental retardation), behavioral issues, chronic lung disease, deafness, and blindness.
These risks are highest for the earliest preemies. However, all preterm babies are at risk.
Prematurity Prevention Clinic • 101 Manning Drive • Chapel Hill, NC 27514