Outcome of extreme prematurity: as information increases so do the dilemmas

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Application of technology in neonatal intensive care has been very successful in reducing mortality, particularly in extremely low birthweight infants. As survival has improved, the need for accurate studies of long term outcome has increased. This need has been met by studies that are larger, more inclusive, and address a wider variety of later outcomes. Rather than a comprehensive quantitative review of these studies, this article uses a smaller number of studies that focus on infants of borderline viability, to illustrate current dilemmas and challenges in interpretation, and the actions, both individual and societal, that may be prompted by these interpretations.

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