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Maternal mortality ratio

The number of maternal deaths directly or indirectly related to pregnancy per 100,000 live births in a given time period.

According to the ICD 9 " A maternal death is defined as the death of a woman while pregnant or within 42 days of the termination of pregnancy, irrespective of the duration and the site of the pregnancy, from any cause related to or aggravated by the pregnancy or its management but not from accidental or incidental causes."

Maternal deaths are further subdivided into two groups
  • Direct obstetric deaths: those resulting from obstetric complications of the pregnant state (pregnancy, labor and puerperium); from interventions, omissions or incorrect treatment; or from a chain of events resulting from any of the above.
  • Indirect obstetric deaths: those resulting from previous existing disease or disease that developed during pregnancy and that were not due to direct obstetric causes but were aggravated by the physiologic effects of pregnancy.


Some include both liveborn and stillborn infants in the denominator for less-developed areas.

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