Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




To explore the causes of infant mortality. Infant mortality is the most important criterion for the evaluation of the sufficiency of mother and child health care and the planning of health care provision. In this study, we investigated infant mortality and associated factors in 7 provinces located in northeastern Turkey. The main outcome of this study was reasons for neonatal mortality. Materials and methods: We created a cross-sectional study and included all babies born in the year 2009 who died during the first 365 days of life. Data were collected from the primary care providers. A data collection form was prepared containing information about the demographic factors, babies, families, causes of mortality, and health facilities. In cases of missing data, an effort was made to contact the baby's mother. Results: Data for 481 babies and their mothers were analyzed. Most of the infant deaths occurred during the early neonatal period. Prematurity and congenital problems constituted 43.6% (n = 210) of the causes of mortality. Mothers' chronic diseases (P = 0.035; OR = 8.2, 95% CI (1.2-58.6)) and the presence of a neonatal specialist in the hospital (P = 0.023; OR = 7.9, 95% CI (1.3-47.4)) were independent factors affecting mortality due to prematurity. Conclusion: Field studies are necessary to determine missed infant deaths. In order to minimize infant mortality, appropriate pregnancy follow-ups ending in deliveries assisted by health professionals, preferably in well-equipped hospitals, are necessary.


Infant mortality, causes of mortality, Turkey

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