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Thin placenta at birth doubles risk of heart failure

London: Children with a thin placenta at birth have double the chances of dying from a sudden heart failure, warns a leading British physician.

A thin placenta can hit the quality of a baby`s foetal development by reducing the flow of nutrients between mother and child, and this can affect the way the heart develops.

David Barker, physician and professor of clinical epidemiologist at the University of Southampton, said it was crucial the characteristics of the placenta were recorded.

"We should routinely note the measurements after birth. We know the thicker the placenta the better, and that a thin placenta is associated with sudden death," adds Barker, the Daily Mail reports.

At a meeting in the Parliament coming Tuesday, experts will discuss whether to introduce a national screening programme to identify young people at risk of cardiac arrest.

Shadow health secretary Andy Burnham said: "It feels as if more youngsters than ever are being affected."