According to some research that was recently conducted, babies who are born early seem to have a greater chance of developing type I diabetes than those who are born on the term.
It also appears that an early birth (namely one from 37-39 weeks) can also mean an increased risk of developing illnesses and obesity, as well as a shorter lifespan. This is all according to Ben-Gurion University of the Negev’s scientists in Israel.
As for those who were born between 39 and 41 weeks, their chances of developing type I diabetes seemed far less likely. At least compared to those who were born prior to or after the specified period.
Researchers did an analysis of as many as 54,073 children who were born earlier than expected. And also 171,000 of those were delivered at full term.
What they concentrated on was the impact on their general health and how many hospitals visits the children had. At the age of five or older, children who were born prematurely seemed to have much higher chances of chronic disease.
One possible reason for why this is the absence of the hormonal axis’s full maturity. Another factor could be fetal endocrine dysfunction. This is a potential initial mechanism that would be responsible for an early-term, spontaneous delivery.
This is all according to those same researchers.
They also witnessed hospitalizations for children up to the age of 18 which involved metabolic and endocrine complications. These, of course, were far more usual in the prematurely born group. Obesity was also more frequent when it came to that group.
The vice dean at the upper-mentioned university, Prof. Eyal Sheiner headed this research. He also happens to be Soroka University Medical Center’s head of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department.
He explained that those pregnancies which ended at an early term were far more likely to bear complications. Such include maternal diabetes (both pregestational and gestational) as well as hypertensive disorders.
In those cases, most deliveries were performed through a cesarean. This means the birthweight was smaller, and not just by a little either.
It’s hardly surprising that babies who were born prematurely were also more likely to have a low birth weight: 5.5 pounds or even less (2.5 kilograms).
The conclusion is that, according to Sheiner and his study team, an early-term delivery could indeed heighten the potential of a shorter life as well as have an effect on one’s overall health and well-being.
The Horizon had published these findings.