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[Unpublished] . 100 p. (WHO/MCH/MSM/91.6)The Maternal Health and Safe Motherhood Programme under WHO's Division of Family Health has compiled maternal mortality data in its 3rd edition of Maternal Mortality Ratios and Rates. The report contains data up to 1991. These data come from almost all WHO member countries. 1988 estimates reveal that 509,000 women die each year from causes related to pregnancy and childbirth. Most die from preventable causes such as aseptic abortions and lack of adequate health care. 4000 of these maternal deaths occur in developed countries. Thus developing countries, where 87% of the world's births occur, experience 99% of maternal deaths. In fact, the lifetime risk of death from causes related to pregnancy and childbirth in developing countries is 1:57 compared to 1:1825 in developed countries. Women in countries of western Africa have the greatest risk (1:18) and those in North America the smallest risk (1:4006). Even though the maternal mortality ratio for developing countries fell from 450-520 per 100,000 live births between 1983-1988, it increased in western African countries (700-760). This report consists mainly of tables of maternal mortality estimates for each country and in some cases certain areas of each country, for the world and various regions and subregions, and changes in maternal mortality since 1983 for the world and various regions and subregions. The world comparison table includes live births, maternal deaths, maternal mortality ratios and rates, lifetime risk, and total fertility. Country tables list year, data sources, maternal mortality ratio, indication if abortion deaths were included or not, and reference.