Using birth defects registry data to evaluate infant and childhood mortality associated with birth defects: an alternative to traditional mortality assessment using underlying cause of death statistics

Birth Defects Research. Part A, Clinical and Molecular Teratology
Glenn E Copeland, Russell S Kirby

Abstract

Although birth defects are a leading cause of death in infancy and early childhood, the proportion of all deaths to children with clinically diagnosed birth defects is not well documented. The study is intended to measure the proportion of all deaths to infants and children under age 10 occurring to children with birth defects and how and why this proportion differs from the proportion of deaths due to an underlying cause of congenital anomalies using standard mortality statistics. A linked file of Michigan livebirths and deaths was combined with data from a comprehensive multisource birth defects registry of Michigan livebirths born during the years 1992 through 2000. The data were analyzed to determine the mortality rate for infants and children with birth defects and for children with no reported birth defect. Mortality risk ratios were calculated. The underlying causes of death for children with birth defects were also categorized and compared to cause- specific mortality rates for the general population. Congenital anomalies were the underlying cause of death for 17.8% of all infant deaths while infants with birth defects were 33.7% of all infant deaths in the study. Almost half of all Michigan deaths to children aged 1 to...Continue Reading

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Birth Defects

Birth defects encompass structural and functional alterations that occur during embryonic or fetal development and are present since birth. The cause may be genetic, environmental or unknown and can result in physical and/or mental impairment. Here is the latest research on birth defects.

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