Table of Contents

HK J Paediatr (New Series)
Vol 2. No. 1, 1997

HK J Paediatr (New Series) 1997;2:91

Proceedings of Scientific Meeting

Birth Asphyxia: The Leading Cause of Neonatal Death in China

DC Xu, DH Wang, SM Zhao

HK J Paediatr (new series) 1997;2:81-97

Chinese Paediatric Forum
Department of Paediatrics, The University of Hong Kong
November 15-17, 1996

Birth asphyxia leading to multiorgan system damage is the major cause of neonatal mortality and morbidity in China. The incidence was 9.0% of 38 000 deliveries with a mortality rate of 3-13%. At Peking Union Medical College, for 7608 deliveries between 1983 and 1988 the morbidity was 3.8% and mortality was 5.1%. A great effort has been made to lower these rates to realize the Chinese Government's goal of a one-third reduction in child death in the 1990s. 1. Standard protocols have been developed to enable a prompt response to asphyxia. 2. Training courses to teach new techniques of resuscitation have been organized. 3. Criteria for the clinical and laboratory diagnosis of birth asphyxia have been published. Clinical: based on Sarnat & Sarnat's stages. Ultrasonography: to evaluate brain-damage for full-term neonates. Computer tomography: a scan grading system for assessment of birth asphyxia. CDI: to measure cerebral blood flow. 4. Special treatments, such as Chinese herbs (Dan-Shen, Salviae Miltiorrhezae) and hyperbaric oxygen therapy have been initiated. 5. Follow-up study and early intervention: NBNA has been used to predict the prognosis for asphyxiated newborns. Early intervention has been used to improve the outcome. 6. Research into birth asphyxia has been carried out. We conclude that the incidence and mortality rate of birth asphyxia has declined during the past decade, however, there are still significant differences between different areas.


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