n South African Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology - Saving mothers : 1999 - 2001

Volume 9, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0038-2329
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



The 'big five' causes of maternal death in South Africa in the 3 years 1999 - 2001 were non-pregnancy-related infection (mainly AIDS), complications of hypertension in pregnancy, obstetric haemorrhage, pregnancy-related sepsis and preexisting medical conditions. Women 35 years and older were at greater risk of dying than younger women, and women in their first pregnancy or who had had 5 or more pregnancies were also at greater risk. Recommendations have been made by the National Committee on Confidential Enquiries into Maternal Deaths (NCCEMD) that address the problems of avoidable factors. If implemented, these should result in a reduction of maternal deaths.

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