Tracking Birth Defects in Vermont
Birth defects are problems that develop while a fetus is growing during pregnancy. These problems can cause physical and mental disabilities, and may result in death. There are thousands of different birth defects. Most occur in the first three months of pregnancy. The most common are heart defects, hypospadias, cleft lip and cleft palate, Down syndrome, and spina bifida.
Most birth defects are thought to be caused by a complex mix of factors, including a person’s genes, behaviors, and things in the environment. For some birth defects, the cause is known. But for most, the cause or causes are still unknown.