Monday, March 26, 2012
Low birth-weight (LBW) infants who are born before the completion of 37 weeks of gestation are called Pre-term Infants. Children born after 37 weeks of gestation, but weighing less than 2.5 kg are called SFD (Small For Dates) infants.
Low birth-weight infants need special care with feeds, an atmosphere free from dirt and dust (to prevent infection), and some of them even need life-support systems.
The average weight of a baby is around 3 kg at birth. Children who weigh much less than 3 kg at birth are called low birth-weight infants. These babies are: born to mothers who have had such complications as diabetes or anaemia in pregnancy, or to mothers with infections, or to under-nourished mothers.
Multiple pregnancies, such as twins, may also result in babies weighing less than the average. Certain genetic defects, such as Down's Syndrome, may also cause babies to be born with low birth-weight.