Salisbury babies among the biggest in England, figures show

Pregnant woman - Salisbury Big Babies story (Radar AI)

Published by Mike Draper at 5:52am 15th April 2019. (Updated at 5:53am 15th April 2019)

Babies born in our city are some of the largest in the whole of the country according to a latest study.

New born children at Salisbury District Hospital are weighing-in as some of the heaviest in England, new figures have revealed.

  • There were 2,140 babies born and weighed by Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust in the 12 months to March 2018
  • Of these, 13% (or 275 babies) tipped the scales at 4kg or more (the equivalent of 8lb 13oz)
  • The super-size cohort at Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust places it in the top 25% of NHS trusts for heavy babies

Almost 60,000 babies born across England during the same period weighed in at 4kg or over - 11% of the total.

The figures were gathered by 'NHS Digital'.

Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust is in the top 25% of NHS trusts for heavy babies
13% (or 275 babies) tipped the scales at 4kg (8lb 13oz) or more at Salisbury Hospital, putting it in the top 25% of NHS trusts for heavy babies in the year to March 2018

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) says this is the benchmark for a baby to be considered large, the medical term for which is macrosomia. Unusually large babies can cause difficulties during labour and delivery, according to the RCM.

RCM professional policy advisor, Clare Livingstone says:

"This could include a higher risk of shoulder dystocia, when the shoulders get stuck and impacted by the woman's pelvis, which can require some manoeuvring to help the baby out,"

"There is a risk of injury with these deliveries, but it is a very small risk."

  • Babies born at Salisbury District Hospital most commonly weighed between 3000g and 3499g (6lb 10oz - 7lb 11oz).
  • More than a third of babies fell into this category

THE RISKS:

  • Women with significantly large babies are more likely to need a caesarian section

HOW THE REST OF ENGLAND COMPARES:

In Hampshire there were 4,750 babies born and weighed by Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Of these, 13%, or 605 babies, weighed 4kg or more.

The highest proportion of big babies were born at the Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust in North Yorkshire, where 16% of babies weighed at least 4kg.

Barts Health NHS Trust in London had the smallest proportion, with just 7%.

Obese mothers – those with a Body Mass Index of 30 or over – are twice as likely to have a baby weighing at least 4kg, according to the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.

Patrick O'Brien, consultant obstetrician and RCOG spokesman, said:

"There are a number of factors that may increase the risk of a baby being born larger than average."

"These include a woman with a history of having large babies, going past her due date, being overweight or obese before or during pregnancy, and certain medical conditions, such as diabetes."

"Women are encouraged to eat healthily and exercise before conception and during pregnancy."

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