Premature Infant's Inability to Maintain Body Heat
The premature infant's body is unable to maintain body heat. To prevent hypothermia, a potentially dangerous loss of body heat, the infant is kept warm on a heated bed, either inside a draft-free enclosure (Reference isolette Opens New Window or incubator) or under a radiant heater.
As the infant's Reference nervous system Opens New Window, skin, and metabolism mature, the infant becomes less vulnerable to hypothermia. At about 34 weeks' Reference gestation Opens New Window, a Reference premature infant Opens New Window usually can be moved into an open crib.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: April 14, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Reference John Pope, MD - Pediatrics