Risk of Stillbirth Increases Towards the End of Pregnancy


According to a recent article in the BMJ, following an analysis of more than 15 million pregnancies, the risk of stillbirth increases with every week that a pregnancy continues past 37 weeks.

In addition, it was found that here was a small but increased risk of stillbirth in mothers who continued their pregnancy to 41 weeks’ gestation.

Researchers noted that women who carry till 41 weeks gestation should not be alarmed. The increased risk of stillbirth is very low.

A third of the 3,000 babies a year who are stillborn are term babies. This is a very sad fact.


The study further revealed that black women are 1.5 to 2 times more likely to suffer stillbirth regardless of the gestation that they carry to.

Neonatal Death

It’s interesting that the study did not find any correlation between gestation and an increase in neonatal death. Despite the increased risk of stillbirth, delivery between 38 and 41 weeks did not appear to increase the risk of neonatal death. However, according to the study, a risk increased by 87 per cent for deliveries at 42 weeks’gestation compared to 41 weeks.

Data Reviewed

The study was led by Queen Mary University of London. and looked at the data of studies carried out in the UK, US, Denmark and Norway. This included a total of 15,124,027 pregnancies, 17,830 stillbirths and 2,348 newborn deaths.


The results of the study should enable women to make a better informed choice about the timing of their delivery. This is so important. Women need to be given as much information as possible about the risks:benefits ratio so that they can make the right decision for themselves.

If you or a loved one would like to discuss a stillbirth compensation claim or neonatal death compensation claim, please do not hesitate to contact us.