Descriptive analysis of maternal and neonatal characteristics in the maternity of the Dona Estefânia Hospital between 2005 and 2008.

Maria Teresa Ventura, Manuel do Carmo Gomes


Between 2005 and 2008 there were 8413 newborns at the maternity of the Hospital Dona Estefânia (HDE), comprising about 8% of the total number of newborns in Portugal in the same period. Fetal mortality (0,20%) met the goal of the Portuguese National Health Plan (NHP) and was at the lowest levels reported in the European Union. The percentage of preterm deliveries (8,1%) and caesareans (31,9%), however, are still above the goals established by the NHP, respectively, 4,9% and 24,8%. In newborns, the odds ratio of a low Apgar index at five minutes was 1,35 for each 100 g of birth weight less and 1,33 for each gestational week less. Average maternal age was 30,4 years old, with 3,8% being adolescents. About 22% were foreign mothers, a number well above the Portuguese national average of 9%. The percentage of preterm births and caesareans were lower among Chinese mothers and quite variable among nationalities. Weight at birth was found to correlate significantly with gestational age, type of pregnancy (twins/singleton), foetus gender, maternal parity and age at delivery. On average, when everything else remained constant, one additional gestational week translated into more 176 g; a twin newborn was, on average, 381 g lighter than a singleton, and a female newborn was, on average, 48 g lighter than a male. We present percentile tables of weight at birth by sex and gestational age (36-41 weeks) for newborns at the HDE.

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