What do the numbers say? - Introduction of the WHO ICD-PM classification and fetuses-at risk approach in perinatal audit, South India

Momina Zulfeen, Rekha Upadhyay, Sapna V. Amin, Muralidhar V. Pai, Leslie Lewis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: In India, despite a reduction in perinatal mortality rate from 2014 to 2019, still birth rate is still the same at the national average of 4/1000 live births. As yet there is no nation-wide audit in India except for facility based audits. Hence the need for a simplified yet effective audit process exists. The aim of this study was to perform a qualitative perinatal audit and devise methods for future audits. Methods: We conducted a one year audit for all perinatal deaths using WHO ICD PM and 3-delay classification. Gestational age (GA) specific mortality was calculated for significant underlying factors using fetusesat risk approach. Results: We recorded a perinatal mortality rate of 6.1/1000 births among booked cases and 21.32/1000 births among referred cases. Fetal growth restriction was the most common antenatal condition, accounting to 33.3% of antepartum deaths. Prematurity accounted to 52% of neonatal deaths. Phase 2 delay with delayed referrals in severe pre-eclampsia and Phase 1 delay with late visit (>24 h) to hospital after experiencing absent fetal movements were the most common identifiable delays. Hypertension stood out to be the single most common risk-factor. GA specific mortalities, calculated using fetuses-at risk approach, show a peak mortality rate at 30 weeks, 37 weeks and 38 weeks in pregnancies with early-onset preeclampsia, severe fetal growth restriction and medically treated gestational diabetes respectively. Conclusion: The audit identified significant contributing factors to the mortality. ICD-PM and 3-delay classification was simpler and easier to apply with wide areas of opportunities for secondary analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-150
Number of pages7
JournalClinical and Experimental Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 15-02-2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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