Effect of Delayed Umbilical Cord Clamping on Hemodynamic Instability in Preterm Neonates below 35 Weeks

J Trop Pediatr. 2022 Apr 5;68(3):fmac035. doi: 10.1093/tropej/fmac035.


Introduction: Delaying umbilical cord clamping facilitates postnatal transition in neonates but evidence on its effect in reducing hemodynamic instability in preterm neonates is inconclusive.

Aims: To evaluate delayed cord clamping (DCC) in reducing the incidence of hemodynamic instability in preterm neonates below 35 weeks gestational age admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit.

Methods: Neonates between 25 weeks and 34 weeks and 6 days gestation were enrolled. Hemodynamic and respiratory parameters were monitored over 48 h. Hemodynamic instability was defined as persistent tachycardia and/or hypotension necessitating therapy.

Results: The DCC cohort included 62 neonates with an equal number in the non-DCC group. The birth weight [mean ± standard deviation (SD)] was 1332.90 ± 390.05 g and the gestational age (mean ± SD) was 31.64 ± 2.52 weeks. Hemodynamic instability was noted in 18/62 (29%) neonates in the DCC cohort and 29/62 (46.7%) in the non-DCC group; relative risk (RR) 0.62 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.38-0.99] (p = 0.023). The duration of inotrope requirement in the DCC cohort (mean ± SD) was 38.38 ± 16.99 h compared to 49.13 ± 22.90 h in the non-DCC cohort (p = 0.090). Significantly higher systolic, diastolic and mean arterial pressures were noted from 6 h to 48 h in the DCC cohort (p < 0.001). The severity of respiratory distress and FiO2 requirement was also less in the first 24 h. There was no difference in the incidence of patent ductus arteriosus, late-onset sepsis or mortality.

Conclusion: Delaying umbilical cord clamping at birth by 60 s resulted in significantly lower hemodynamic instability in the first 48 h and higher blood pressure parameters.

Keywords: delayed cord clamping; hemodynamic instability; hypotension; placental transfusion; preterm.

MeSH terms

  • Constriction
  • Delivery, Obstetric / methods
  • Female
  • Hemodynamics
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature*
  • Pregnancy
  • Umbilical Cord Clamping
  • Umbilical Cord*