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s/o fetus alive... What is the difference between a baby and a fetus?
January 20, 2013 at 10:08 PM

Origin of the Term "Fetus"

  • Fetus is a Latin word that means bringing forth, hatching of young and offspring. It also has roots in Indo-European, which relate to sucking or suckling. The original spelling of fetus is foetus.

A Fetus Resides in the Womb

  • A fetus at varying stages of development

    A fetus cannot typically survive outside of the womb before 24 weeks gestation. Even then, severe medical and developmental problems can result in fatality. A newborn baby, on the other hand, can survive outside of the womb.

A Baby is Born

  • A newborn baby's foot

    At the exact moment of birth a fetus is no longer considered a fetus, but a newborn baby. A newborn baby can breathe without assistance and should be able and ready to suckle from the mother's breast or a bottle.

How Long is a Baby Considered a Newborn?

  • Generally, the term newborn is applied to babies who are less than 28 days of age. Newborn may also be used to describe premature and postmature infants and stilborn babies.

Fetuses and Newborns are a lot alike

  • New research suggests that newborn babies do not suddenly reach new milestones because they leave the womb. Rather, a fetus at 32 weeks gestation often behaves just like a two-week-old newborn.

what is the difference between a fetus and a baby?
  • Only group members can vote in this poll.
  1. 22% - a baby is a live breathing person
  2. 33% - a fetus is sustainable only in the inside of a woman
  3. 38% - they are one in the same
  4. 5% - other


  • canadianmom1974
    January 20, 2013 at 10:14 PM
    It's all about perspective. My kids were my babies from the second I even suspected I was pregnant. When I had my losses, I didn't lose an embryo or fetus, I lost a baby. But I don't expect everyone to feel the same way I did, I don't hold them to my standards or perspective. My babies were just that - *my* babies.
  • jaxTheMomm
    January 20, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    A fetus is the scientic term for a specific gestational age.

  • EireLass
    January 20, 2013 at 10:56 PM

    I don't like the word, that's it for me. I call it a baby upon conception.

  • Bigmetalchicken
    January 21, 2013 at 1:26 AM

    My personal opinion is, it is a fetus until it is born in a viable state. But I have an odd way of thinking. For example, I do not consider a lost pregnancy a miscarriage if lost before the thirteen week mark. I would never tell someone that did feel it was a miscarriage that, but in my personal opinion, that is how I feel.

  • toomanypoodles
    January 21, 2013 at 3:37 AM


  • candlegal
    January 21, 2013 at 5:30 AM

    From the time it is conceived, it is a child.

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