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Health Indicator Report of Birth Outcomes: Growth Retardation at Birth: Percentage of Low Birthweight Live Term Singleton Births

LBW affects about one in every 13 babies born each year in the U.S. Studies have shown that LBW is an important predictor of future morbidity and mortality. Compared to infants of normal weight, LBW infants may be at increased risk of perinatal morbidity, infections, and the longer-term consequences of impaired development, such as delayed motor and social development or learning disabilities. The percentage of LBW births among term singleton births is a measure of growth retardation at birth and perinatal health. It can be used to examine the indicator trends and patterns that occur over time and space. These trends may reflect the contributions of environmental exposures and other modifiable risk factors to LBW births.


Birthweight is the first weight of the newborn obtained after birth. Low birthweight is defined as less than 2,500 grams or 5 pounds 8 ounces. Term birth is defined here as the birth at or above 37 completed weeks of gestation.

Data Interpretation Issues

The live birth data are from items reported on the birth certificates. Data are collected on all births occurring in-state as well as births to NM residents that occur out-of-state.


Percentage of Low birthweight, term, singleton infants (LBW infants) is the number of live-born singleton infants born at term (at or above 37 completed weeks of gestation) with a birthweight of less than 2,500 grams (about 5 pounds, 8 ounces), per 100 live, term, singleton births.


Number of live-born, singleton infants born at term (at or above 37 completed weeks of gestation) with a birthweight of less than 2,500 grams.


Total number of live-born, singleton infants born at term.

Healthy People Objective: MICH-8, Reduce low birth weight (LBW) and very low birth weight (VLBW)

U.S. Target: Not applicable, see subobjectives in this category

Other Objectives

CDC Environmental Public Health Tracking, Nationally Consistent Data and Measures (EPHT NCDM)
Page Content Updated On 04/06/2011, Published on 07/31/2014
The information provided above is from the New Mexico Department of Health's NM-IBIS web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: "Retrieved Mon, 16 September 2019 from New Mexico Department of Health, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site:".

Content updated: Tue, 12 Aug 2014 11:49:04 MDT