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Many maternal fatalities in less affluent countries are happening as a result of preventable conditions, researchers have warned.
A study carried out at the University of Washington and published in PLOS Medicine examined data relating to maternal infections across the world to identify trends and patterns, with a view to drawing up recommendations on tackling any problems.
Infections of the genital and urinary tract, as well as soft tissues, were found to be among the most common life-threatening infections linked to pregnancies in low and middle-income nations.
As a result, researchers believe factors including the "epidemiology, risk factors and microbiology" of these infections need to be examined more closely in these countries.
"Without such data, women will continue to be treated inappropriately and experience potentially preventable mortality and morbidity," they said.
The researchers added that these infections occur at a "distinct time during pregnancy", which means there are opportunities to screen and prevent them developing.
Posted by David Smith
World Congress 2015