Risk assessment and management to prevent preterm birth

B. Koullali, M. A. Oudijk, T. A.J. Nijman, B. W.J. Mol, E. Pajkrt

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleOtherpeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Preterm birth is the most important cause of neonatal mortality and morbidity worldwide. In this review, we review potential risk factors associated with preterm birth and the subsequent management to prevent preterm birth in low and high risk women with a singleton or multiple pregnancy. A history of preterm birth is considered the most important risk factor for preterm birth in subsequent pregnancy. General risk factors with a much lower impact include ethnicity, low socio-economic status, maternal weight, smoking, and periodontal status. Pregnancy-related characteristics, including bacterial vaginosis and asymptomatic bacteriuria, appear to be of limited value in the prediction of preterm birth. By contrast, a mid-pregnancy cervical length measurement is independently associated with preterm birth and could be used to identify women at risk of a premature delivery. A fetal fibronectin test may be of additional value in the prediction of preterm birth. The most effective methods to prevent preterm birth depend on the obstetric history, which makes the identification of women at risk of preterm birth an important task for clinical care providers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)80-88
Number of pages9
JournalSeminars in Fetal and Neonatal Medicine
Volume21
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Preterm birth
  • Prevention
  • Risk assessment
  • Risk factors
  • Risk reduction

Cite this