Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Changing where a baby is held immediately after birth could lead to improved uptake of procedure that reduces infant iron deficiency

Date:
April 16, 2014
Source:
The Lancet
Summary:
Changing where a newborn baby is held before its umbilical cord is clamped could lead to improved uptake in hospitals of delayed cord clamping, leading to a decreased risk of iron deficiency in infancy, according to new results from a study. Delaying clamping of the umbilical cord until around two minutes after birth allows for blood to pass from the mother's placenta to the baby, and has previously been shown to reduce the risk of iron deficiency in infancy.

Changing where a newborn baby is held before its umbilical cord is clamped could lead to improved uptake in hospitals of delayed cord clamping, leading to a decreased risk of iron deficiency in infancy, according to new results published in The Lancet.

Delaying clamping of the umbilical cord until around two minutes after birth allows for blood to pass from the mother's placenta to the baby, and has previously been shown to reduce the risk of iron deficiency in infancy.

However, current recommendations -- based on studies conducted 35 years ago -- suggest that for effective placental transfusion to occur, the baby needs to be held at the level of the placenta (introitus position), which is cumbersome, uncomfortable for the person holding the baby, and interferes with immediate contact between mother and baby.

Since these issues could be contributing to low compliance with this procedure in hospitals, ultimately resulting in higher than necessary levels of iron deficiency in babies and children, a group of researchers in Argentina tested whether the transfer of blood in delayed cord clamping procedures is affected by the position in which the baby is held immediately after birth.

In the study, which was conducted in three university affiliated hospitals in Argentina, 197 babies were held in the introitus position while undergoing delayed cord clamping, as per usual practice, but 194 babies were instead immediately placed on the mother's abdomen (tummy) or chest.

By measuring the babies' weights at the point of birth, and immediately after the delayed cord clamping procedure, the researchers were able to measure the volume of blood which had transferred from the placenta to the child.

They found no statistically significant difference between the two groups in the volume of blood transferred, indicating that placing the baby on the mother's chest or abdomen is no less effective than the more awkward introitus position in delayed cord clamping procedures.

According to lead author Professor Nestor Vain, of the Foundation for Maternal and Child Health (FUNDASAMIN) in Buenos Aires, Argentina, "Iron deficiency in newborn babies and children is a serious public health problem in low-income countries, and also prevalent in countries from North America and western Europe. Our study suggests that when umbilical cord clamping is delayed for 2 minutes, holding the baby on the mother's chest or abdomen is no worse than the currently recommended practice of holding the baby below this level. Because of the potential of enhanced bonding between mother and baby, increased success of breastfeeding and the compliance with the procedure, holding the infant by the mother immediately after birth should be strongly recommended."

Writing in a linked Comment, Dr Tonse Raju of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, Bethesda, USA, says, "Introduction of delayed cord clamping into practice has been sporadic, with logistical issues being one possible reason. Intuitively, to keep the newborn baby's position below the level of the placenta in situ should maximise the volume of placental transfusion. However, trying to hold on to a wet, vigorously crying, and wriggling infant at the perineum for 2 min, in gloved hands, is awkward and can be risky. When the mother is waiting anxiously to hold her baby and the father is taking photographs, 2 min could seem like an eternity."

Dr Raju adds that "The study by Nestor Vain and colleagues in The Lancet should bring a sigh of relief from those trying to incorporate delayed umbilical cord clamping into practice…The results are convincing and show that gravity did not have an effect on volume of placental transfusion."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Lancet. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nestor E Vain, Daniela S Satragno, Adriana N Gorenstein, Juan E Gordillo, Juan P Berazategui, M Guadalupe Alda, Luis M Prudent. Effect of gravity on volume of placental transfusion: a multicentre, randomised, non-inferiority trial. The Lancet, 2014; DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(14)60197-5

Cite This Page:

The Lancet. "Changing where a baby is held immediately after birth could lead to improved uptake of procedure that reduces infant iron deficiency." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 April 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140416190950.htm>.
The Lancet. (2014, April 16). Changing where a baby is held immediately after birth could lead to improved uptake of procedure that reduces infant iron deficiency. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140416190950.htm
The Lancet. "Changing where a baby is held immediately after birth could lead to improved uptake of procedure that reduces infant iron deficiency." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140416190950.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued new protocols for healthcare workers interacting with Ebola patients. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has set up new guidelines for health workers taking care of patients infected with Ebola. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) Where's a body buried? Buster's nose can often tell you. He's a cadaver dog, specially trained to find human remains and increasingly being used by law enforcement and accepted in courts. These dogs are helping solve even decades-old mysteries. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins