Neonatal means new born. Neonatology is a branch of pediatrics that studies the care, development, and diseases of newborn infants. Neonatal periodis defined as less than 28th day of life and may be further subdivided into Period 1( birth to less than 24 hr) , Period 2( 24 hr to less than 7 days) and Period 3(from 7 days to less than 28 day of life). The perfect care for both low and high risk newborn infants depends on knowledge of the family history , the history of prior and current pregnancies and the events of labor and delivery .
Neonatology is a hospital based specialty, and is usually practiced in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). The principal patients of neonatologists are newborn infants who are ill or requiring special medical care due to prematurity, low birth weight, intrauterine growth retardation, congenital malformations , sepsis, pulmonary hypoplasia or birth asphyxias.
The infant is undergoing many adaptations to extrauterine life, and its physiological systems, such as the immune system, are far from fully developed. Diseases of concern during the neonatal period include: Neonatal jaundice, Infant respiratory distress syndrome, Neonatal lupus erythematosus, Neonatal conjunctivitis, Neonatal tetanus, Vertically transmitted diseases, Neonatal sepsis, Neonatal bowel obstruction, Benign neonatal seizures, Neonatal acne, Neonatal stroke, etc.