DOI: 10.25259/ijms_180_2023 ISSN: 1998-3654

Causes and prevalence of prenatal and neonatal mortality in the District Dera Ismail Khan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

Muhammad Ashraf Khan
  • General Medicine


Perinatal mortality is among the key health, prosperity, and economic status indicators. This retrospective study determines the causes of prenatal (stillbirth) and neonatal mortality during July–December 2021 and their yearly prevalence during 2013–2021 in the Women and Children’s Hospital in the district Dera Ismail Khan.

Materials and Methods:

The data were extracted from the admission registers maintained by the said hospital and were found not in organized and consolidated form. A month-wise organized/consolidated report for each cause of mortality was prepared.


A total of 508 cases of both prenatal and neonatal mortality in the nursery ward indicated hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) showed overall 39.8% mortality in the study area, followed by premature (15.4%), senile prostatic enlargement (10%), low birth weight revealed (9.3%), birth asphyxia (5.3%), neonatal jaundice (4.5%), respiratory distress syndrome (4.3%), non-nutritive sucking (3.5%), congenital heart defects (2.4%), meconium aspiration syndrome (1.8%), and the remaining cases each contributed to ≤0.6% of overall mortality. The isolation ward contributed (48.5%), followed by the labor room (42.4%), the nutrition ward (6.1%), and the Gynae wards (3%) of all 33 cases. The overall highest mortality occurred in 2019 (15.4%) and lowest in 2013 (6.8%). The remaining years showed each <10% mortality. Neonatal mortality was mostly higher than prenatal mortality during 2013–2021 and highest (85.8%) in 2013 and the lowest (19%) in 2014. The highest and lowest prenatal mortality was 81% (2014) and 14.2% (2013), respectively.


HIE caused about 40% of perinatal mortality. Neonatal mortality showed higher prevalence than prenatal mortality except in 2014.

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