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Why Is This Important?
Birth defects pose a significant public health problem. One in 33 babies is born with a structural birth defect in the United States. Birth defects are a leading cause of infant mortality and responsible for considerable morbidity with enormous economic and social costs. Usually, mental development and physical development are slower in people with Down syndrome than in those without it. Babies and adults with Down syndrome can have physical problems, as well as intellectual disabilities. Some physical problems associated with Down syndrome include: a birth defect of the heart; stomach problems, such as a blocked small intestine; celiac disease, a digestive disease that damages the small intestine so that nutrients from food are not absorbed well; problems with memory, concentration, and judgment, often called dementia; hearing problems; vision problems, such as cataracts or trouble seeing objects that are close by (far-sighted); thyroid problems; and skeletal problems. A person with Down syndrome can have an IQ in the mild-to-moderate range of intellectual disabilities. They also might have delayed language development and difficulties with physical coordination.
Down syndrome is a condition in which a baby is born with an extra chromosome. Chromosomes are small "packages" of genes in the body. They determine how a baby's body forms during pregnancy and how, as the baby grows in the womb and after birth, the baby's body functions. Normally, a baby is born with 46 chromosomes. Babies born with Down syndrome have an extra copy of one of these chromosomes. This extra copy changes the body's and brain's development and causes mental and physical problems for the baby. Prevalence of Down syndrome is calculated in two ways: 1) the number of live-born infants with Down syndrome to mothers less than 35 years of age per 10,000 live-born infants and 2) the number of live-born infants with Down syndrome to mothers 35 years of age or older per 10,000 live-born infants. (Live-born infants are the infants born with any evidence of life). New Mexico live-born infants with Down syndrome, 2015-2019.
Data NotesThe following International Classification of Diseases, 9th and 10th Revisions Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM and ICD-10-CM) codes were used in 2015 to identify Trisomy 21 or Down syndrome: 758.0 and Q90.0-Q90.9, respectively (note: both include all births regardless of maternal age). In 1987, CDC put forth a set of 6-digit codes (the sixth digit provides greater specificity for diagnosis) based on the British Pediatric Association Classification of Diseases and the ICD-9-CM. If CDC/BPA codes are present, the following were used to identify Down syndrome: 758.00-758.09.
- Birth Defects Prevention and Surveillance System (BDPASS), New Mexico Department of Health.
- Birth Certificate Data, Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics (BVRHS), Epidemiology and Response Division, New Mexico Department of Health.
How the Measure is Calculated
Numerator:Number of live-born infants with Down syndrome to mothers in a given age group at delivery.
Denominator:Total number of live-born infants to mothers in a given age group at delivery.
Birth Defects Prevention and Surveillance System (BDPASS)
Birth defects are reported on the birth certificates, which are provided for all births occurring in-state as well as births to NM resident mothers who gave birth out-of-state. Some birth defects (Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, Tetralogy of Fallot, Transposition of Great Arteries, Hypospadias, Lower and Upper Limb Deficiencies, and Trisomy 21) were not reported on birth certificates until 2004.
Birth Certificate Data
Birth certificate information is submitted electronically by hospital medical records staff who use standard mother and facility worksheets and medical charts to collect the needed information. Training of hospital staff is provided by the Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics (BVRHS). The birth certificate information is reviewed by BVRHS for completeness and consistency with state law and NMDOH and national guidelines. BVRHS will contact hospital staff for clarification of missing, inconsistent or incorrect entries. CDC's National Center for Health Statistics provides feedback to BVRHS on data quality and the NMDOH provides feedback to the hospitals to improve data quality and training.