Objective: This pilot study's aim was to establish feasibility of a protocol for delayed cord clamping (DCC) versus immediate cord clamping (ICC) at preterm birth and to examine its effects on initial blood pressure and other outcomes.
Study design: A randomized controlled trial recruited 32 infants between 24 and 32 weeks. Immediately before delivery, mothers were randomized to ICC (cord clamped at 5 to 10 seconds) or DCC (30- to 45-second delay in cord clamping) groups.
Results: Intention-to-treat analyses revealed that the DCC group were more likely to have higher initial mean blood pressures (adjusted OR 3.4) and less likely to be discharged on oxygen (adjusted OR 8.6). DCC group infants had higher initial glucose levels (ICC=36 mg/dl, DCC=73.1 mg/dl; p=0.02).
Conclusion: The research design is feasible. The immediate benefit of improved blood pressure was confirmed and other findings deserve consideration for further study.