Early neonatal mortality and neurological outcomes of neonatal resuscitation in a resource-limited setting on the Thailand-Myanmar border: A descriptive study

PLoS One. 2018 Jan 5;13(1):e0190419. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0190419. eCollection 2018.

Abstract

Background: Of the 4 million neonatal deaths worldwide yearly, 98% occur in low and middle-income countries. Effective resuscitation reduces mortality and morbidity but long-term outcomes in resource-limited settings are poorly described. This study reports on newborn neurological outcomes following resuscitation at birth in a resource-limited setting where intensive newborn care including intubation is unavailable.

Methods: Retrospective analysis of births records from 2008 to 2015 at Shoklo Malaria Research Unit (SMRU) on the Thailand-Myanmar border.

Findings: From 21,225 newbonrs delivered, 15,073 (71%) met the inclusion criteria (liveborn, singleton, ≥28 weeks' gestation, delivered in SMRU). Neonatal resuscitation was performed in 460 (3%; 422 basic, 38 advanced) cases. Overall early neonatal mortality was 6.6 deaths per 1000 live births (95% CI 5.40-8.06). Newborns receiving basic and advanced resuscitation presented an adjusted rate for death of 1.30 (95%CI 0.66-2.55; p = 0.442), and 6.32 (95%CI 3.01-13.26; p<0.001) respectively, compared to newborns given routine care. Main factors related to increased need for resuscitation were breech delivery, meconium, and fetal distress (p<0.001). Neurodevelopmental follow-up to one year was performed in 1,608 (10.5%) of the 15,073 newborns; median neurodevelopmental scores of non-resuscitated newborns and those receiving basic resuscitation were similar (64 (n = 1565) versus 63 (n = 41); p = 0.732), while advanced resuscitation scores were significantly lower (56 (n = 5); p = 0.017).

Interpretations: Newborns requiring basic resuscitation at birth have normal neuro-developmental outcomes at one year of age compared to low-risk newborns. Identification of risk factors (e.g., breech delivery) associated with increased need for neonatal resuscitation may facilitate allocation of staff to high-risk deliveries. This work endorses the use of basic resuscitation in low-resource settings, and supports on-going staff training to maintain bag-and-mask ventilation skills.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cohort Studies
  • Health Care Rationing*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant Mortality*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Myanmar / epidemiology
  • Nervous System / physiopathology*
  • Resuscitation*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Thailand / epidemiology

Grant support

This study was supported by Centre for Tropical Medicine and Global Health, Oxford University and Shoklo Malaria Research Unit, Mae Sot Thailand supported from the Wellcome Trust Thailand Major Overseas Programme 2015-2020 [106698]. However, this study received no specific grant funding. The supporters had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. There was no additional external funding received for this study.