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Probabilities of Fetal Mortality

Fern E. French and Jessie M. Bierman
Public Health Reports (1896-1970)
Vol. 77, No. 10 (Oct., 1962), pp. 835-847
DOI: 10.2307/4591645
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4591645
Page Count: 13
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Probabilities of Fetal Mortality
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Abstract

In a communitywide followup study of pregnancy on the island of Kauai, Hawaii, half of the 3,083 pregnancies occurring during the period 1953-56 were reported to the study at 4-11 weeks of gestation. Probabilities of fetal death were calculated, based on fetal deaths reported by the women involved as well as deaths known to physicians. It was then possible to construct an antenatal life table for the entire community. These probabilities of fetal death by month of gestation provide estimates of the risks of loss not supplied by customary fetal death ratios. The highest rate is for the earliest period studied, 4-7 weeks' gestation; it probably represents a point on the downward slope of a loss curve which reaches even higher levels during preceding weeks. The probability of eventual loss for a conceptus that survives 4 weeks of gestation is estimated to be at least 24 percent, a level consistent with previous estimates but not before documented.

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