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The care of premature infants

Neonatology refers to the medical care of newborn infants. It is a subspecialty of pediatrics and it focuses on treating premature and ill infants that require constant supervision. Neonatology is practiced in hospitals at the intensive care units for infants or NICUs. The medical problems of infants receiving neonatal medical care range from low birth weight and prematurity to intrauterine growth retardation and congenital malformations. Infants that suffer from sepsis, pulmonary hyperplasia and birth asphyxias are also kept in the NICU. A recent neonatology case report has shown a clear connection between the advent of this branch of medicine and the decreased infant mortality rates we have witnessed in the past few years in the countries that offer neonatal care. The invention of the infant incubator by Joseph DeLee in 1898 was the start of neonatology and in 1965 the first newborn intensive care unit was opened. The practice of evaluating and noting down the evolution of the newborn condition has helped with the development of new treatment and medicine.


This subspecialty was developed with the combined efforts of doctors with various specialties. Neonatology is not concerned with genetics for instance, but a genetics case report can help specialists uncover new leads with regards to certain infant conditions. Doctors can receive certification for neonatology and offer strictly neonatal services since 1975 in America. After this practice has been made official, it has known a rapid development. The mechanical ventilation and the pulmonary surfactant replacement therapy helped save numerous newborns that were too small in the past to have any chance of survival. Nowadays, a newborn of 460 grams and 23 weeks of gestation can survive in the NICU and it is all thanks to the evolution of neonatology. Specialists are continuously striving to improve their services and uncover new methods to treat and support premature babies.


Considering the fact that neonatology depends so much on equipment, one can say that the evolution of technology has allowed smaller and smaller newborns to survive inside state of the art incubators that imitate the condition of the womb so well. An infant born after 26 weeks has an amazing 90% chance of survival these days. The current concern of doctors specializing in neonatology is helping infants that have problems from birth to develop normally from all points of view, including neurologically. The studies focus on uncovering a method of ensuring that infants born prematurely or with medical condition will not only survive, but also grow up healthily without any risk of suffering from a neurological condition. Doctors can find numerous neonatology case reports and genetics case reports on specialized platforms such as where the problem is tackled exhaustively. A neonatologist that wishes to improve its treatment methods should focus on continuous learning, because breakthroughs appear every day in neonatology. The combined efforts of doctors and practitioners all around the world is bound to provide better results nevertheless. In the past, infants born prematurely had very low chances of survival and in a couple of decades, things have changed greatly with the chances of survival reaching 90%.