Saroj Saigal
Professor Emeritus, Pediatrics

Dr. Saroj Saigal obtained her medical degrees (MBBS, MD Ped) and pediatric training in India. She did her neonatal fellowship at the Universities of Edinburgh, McGill, and McMaster, and received further postgraduate degrees, Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (FRCP Ped) and Fellow, American Academy of Pediatrics (FAAP). She joined the pediatric faculty at McMaster University, Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, as a neonatologist (1973 -2004), and Director of the Neonatal Follow-up Program for high-risk infants (1973 -2013). Dr. Saigal has been Professor of Pediatrics since 1984, and is currently Professor Emerita at McMaster, and continues to participate in the follow-up clinic as well as her ongoing research.

Dr. Saigal and her colleagues have followed one of the few population-based cohorts of extremely low birth weight infants longitudinally from infancy to adulthood and she has published extensively on the same. She was co-PI of a further follow-up study on the mental health and cardiovascular and metabolic sequelae of the same cohort in their 30s. These studies have generated several important publications on one of the oldest-in-age longitudinally followed cohort of extremely premature infants in the world. She is also the co-founder with Prof Eero Kajantie of ‘Adults born Preterm International Collaboration’ (APIC), a network that facilitates collaboration and sharing of data with investigators interested in the long-term health and disease of this vulnerable population. Dr. Saigal has also been involved as a collaborator in several perinatal clinical trials.

Dr Saigal has held many leadership positions as the Secretary and President of the Section of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine of the Canadian Pediatric Society. She is the recipient of many awards, among them: the Senior Scientist Career Award from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (2000-2005); the Canadian Pediatric Society’s prestigious Distinguished Neonatologist Award, the Society’s highest award for Neonatology (2005); the Landmark Award from the Section of Perinatal Pediatrics of the American Academy of Pediatrics (2009); and the Douglas K, Richardson Award from the American Society for Pediatric Research (2011) for her lifetime achievement as a clinical investigator who has made substantive contributions to Perinatal and Pediatric Healthcare Research. In 2018, Dr Saigal was awarded the Virginia Apgar Award for distinguished contributions to Perinatal Medicine and was also recognized by her alma mater with the McMaster Faculty of Health Sciences Community of Distinction Award.

Dr. Saigal is internationally recognized for her studies that focus on the quality of life and consequences of having been born extremely prematurely. She has written a book for a lay audience, “Preemie Voices” (Friesen Press, 2014), that incorporates letters written by the former preemies now in their 30s, and the research findings on them. It is accompanied by a 25-minute video documentary -
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