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October 12, 1984

Causes of Neonatal Mortality-Reply

Author Affiliations

University of Washington Seattle

JAMA. 1984;252(14):1854. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03350140013010

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In Reply.—  Dr Raring is correct that JAMA erroneously printed "<500 g" in Table 2 instead of "<1,500 g." However, there is no conflict between the Oregon data and that of SIDS researchers. Infants of low birth weight who survive the postneonatal period are more susceptible to SIDS than infants with higher birth weights. The data in the Tables are only concerned with mortality. Once an infant has survived the postneonatal period, long-term survival is the most probable outcome regardless of birth weight. The Oregon data also show a three to ten times increased risk of SIDS among low-birth-weight infants. The lower the birth weight, the greater the risk.The data provided by Capps et al is an interesting expansion of information on this subject. Unfortunately, the small and heterogeneous nonwhite Oregon population precluded meaningful similar stratification by race and age.