Prematurity and The Family

  • R. Debra Bendell
  • Mary Anne McCaffree
  • Jan L. Culbertson
  • Diane J. Willis


Advances in the medical care of prematurely born infants have improved the survival of these children (Hack, 1979). Twenty years ago, the 2.1 kilogram son of a United States president died because of progressive respiratory distress syndrome and prematurity despite the efforts of specialized physicians and utilization of the most complex medical care available. Today, infants the same size have a greater than 90% chance of survival with normal development occurring in the majority (Hack, 1979). Relatively small infants weighing 1000 to 1250 grams or less have been noted to have survival rates of 80–85% (Rothberg et al., 1981). Very low weight (800 grams or more) infants are noted to have 50–70% survival. Bennett et al. (1983) reported an improved outcome for even smaller children (less than 800 grams) in 20% of surviving patients.


Premature Infant Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Premature Birth Grief Reaction Handicapped Infant 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Debra Bendell
    • 1
  • Mary Anne McCaffree
    • 1
  • Jan L. Culbertson
    • 1
  • Diane J. Willis
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Oklahoma Health Sciences CenterOklahoma CityUSA

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