What is the March of Dimes Birth Defects Prevention Month?
Since 1958, the March of Dimes has been funding cutting-edge research and innovative programs to save babies from birth defects, premature birth, and low birth weight. To increase awareness of these important public health issues, January has been designated as Birth Defects Prevention Month. Back to top What are birth defects? Birth defects are abnormalities of structure, function, or body metabolism that are present at birth and lead to physical or mental disabilities, or death. There are more than 4,000 different known birth defects, ranging from minor to serious. Although many can be treated or cured, birth defects are the leading cause of death in the first year of life. Birth defects can be caused by genetic, environmental, or unknown factors. Back to top What are the common types of birth defects? According to the March of Dimes, birth defects are grouped into three categories: structural or metabolic, congenital infections, and other conditions. Structural birth defects result