J Korean Med Sci.  2004 Feb;19(1):27-31. 10.3346/jkms.2004.19.1.27.

The Changes in the Mortality Rates of Low Birth Weight Infant and Very Low Birth Weight Infant in Korea over the Past 40 Years

  • 1Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Kyunghee University, Seoul, Korea. baecwkmc@zaigen.co.kr


Total 36 reports on the mortality rates (MRs) of low birth weight infants (LBWI) and very LBWI (VLBWI) in Korea from the 1967 through 2001 were analyzed. We compared the changes in the MR by 5 and 10-yr interval. The MRs observed by 5-yr intervals from the early 1960s through the 1990s have drastically decreased. TheMRs of LBWI are as follows: 23.1% and 23.6% in the 1960s, 17.3% and 16.8% in the 1970s, 14.1% and 14.4% in the 1980s, and 8.1% in the early 1990s. The MRsof VLBWI have also fallen and were reported as follows: 68.2% and 63.7% in the 1960s, 55.8% and 57.6% in the 1970s, 56.2% and 48.1% in the 1980s, 33.5% and 24.5% in the 1990s, and 11.7% in the early 2000s. In every 10-yr period, the MRs of LBWI have decreased from 23.4% in 1960, to 17.0% in 1970, to 14.2% in 1980, and to 8.1% in 1990. The MRs of VLBWI also have decreased from 66.2% in 1960, to 56.7% in 1970, to 50.8% in 1980, to 32.9% in 1990, and to 11.7% in 2000. TheMR of LBWI and VLBWI has gone down remarkably due to improvements in neonatology in Korea as shown above.


Survival Rate; Mortality; Infant, Low Birth Weight; Infant, Very Low Birth Weight; Infant, Premature; Infant, Newborn; Infant, Korea

MeSH Terms

*Infant Mortality
Infant, Low Birth Weight
Infant, Newborn
Infant, Very Low Birth Weight
Time Factors
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