Birth weight-specific fetal death rates were evaluated for Alabama for the years 1974–1983. The fetal death rate for the total low birth weight group improved less than 20% during the decade, whereas the fetal death rate for the 2500–3999-g birth weight group improved 40%, and the fetal death rate for the group of 4000 g or more improved 71%. By 1983,76% of all stillbirths weighed less than 2500 g, compared with 66% in 1974. In contrast, in both years, only about 7% of live births weighed less than 2500 g. This study suggests that increased reporting of stillbirths of less than 500 g has contributed to the recent apparent lack of improvement in stillbirth rates in Alabama.
© 1987 The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists