Special Newborn Care Unit


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Objective: To find out the pattern and prevalence of congenital birth defects among neonates in western regional hospital.

Congenital birth defect means the defect or malformation that is present at birth. It is an abnormality of physical structure that is seen at birth or within few weeks after birth . According WHO documents 1972, the term congenital birth defect (CBD) should be confined to structural defects present at birth. CBD can be classified in to major and minor. Minor defects have structural abnormality present at birth with minimal effect on clinical function, but they may have a cosmetic effect e.g. preauricular tag in Goldenhar syndrome. But major malformation results on significant effect of function or on social acceptability e.g. ventricular septal defect (VSD) and cleft lip.

We conducted this study to find out the pattern and prevalence of CBD in neonates admitted to our special newborn care unit (SNCU), hoping the information available from this study will help the managers to make preventive strategy to decrease the prevalence of CBD in this western region.

Congenital birth defects being one of the main cause of neonatal mortality, are very common in our country and most commonly affected system in our study was ear, eye, face and neck anomalies and with syndromes followed by digestive, genitourinary, musculoskeletal, cvs, and skin in descending order of frequency. So, healthcare providers must stress upon primary prevention like vaccination, nutrition and drugs to decrease preventable cause of congenital birth defect. The differences in our study and the other maybe because we were lacking the set-up of sub-specialties like plastic surgery, pediatric surgery, neurosurgery, pediatric urology and neonatology.

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