WHAT IS PRETERM BIRTH?
Preterm babies may need more help to eat and breathe, and can suffer from disabilities including digestive problems and bleeding in the brain. Preterm birth is the leading cause of death before baby's first birthday in the U.S. A full-term pregnancy lasts about 40 weeks.
Babies born before 37 weeks of completed pregnancy (gestation) are considered preterm. Babies born before 28 weeks of completed pregnancy are considered extremely preterm. Babies born before 23 weeks of completed pregnancy, rarely survive. The earlier a baby is born, the higher the risks of death and severe short-term or long-term health complications.