Medical Definition of Extremely low birth weight (ELBW) baby

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Extremely low birth weight (ELBW) baby: A baby born very prematurely weighing between 401 and 1000 grams (about 14 to 35 ounces) at birth. Extremely low birth weight (ELBW) babies are at the lower limits of viability.

If ELBW babies survive, they are at elevated risk for neurological abnormalities, hearing and visual impairment, and developmental delay in infancy. The lower a baby's weight at birth, the more likely the child is to be subject to such problems.

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Reviewed on 12/11/2018

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