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Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

Authoring team

With respect to stillbirths:

  • stillbirths categorised according to the Extended Wigglesworth classification show the largest proportion of deaths being ascribed to unexplained antepartum fetal deaths (70.7% of all reported stillbirths in 2003)
  • largest identifiable causes of deaths were:
    • congenital malformations (15.2% in 2003)
    • death from intrapartum causes (7.6% in 2003)
  • deaths classified as unexplained antepartum fetal deaths are then further categorised according to the Obstetric (Aberdeen) classification, which enables a further 18.7% of stillbirths to be assigned to antepartum haemorrhage (8.0% of all stillbirths in 2003), maternal disorder (5.1%), preeclampsia (3.9%) and mechanical complications (1.1%)
  • in 2003, the deaths of some 1927 stillborn babies (51.9% of all stillbirths reported in 2003) remain unexplained according to the classification systems in use


  1. Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (April 2005).Confidential Enquiry into Maternal and Child Health (England and Wales).Stillbirth, neonatal and post-neonatal mortality 2000-2003

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