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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 10  |  Page : 465-468

Timing of planned caesarean section and the morbidities of the newborn

1 Department of Pediatrics, Makassed General Hospital, Beirut, Lebanon
2 Faculty of Public Health, Lebanese University, Beirut, Lebanon

Correspondence Address:
Mohammad Hourani
Department of Pediatrics, Makassed General Hospital, Riad El-Solh Street P.O. 6301, Beirut 11072210
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 22363085

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Background: Elective caesarean section rates have risen over the last decade worldwide. The increase in this rate is not associated with clear benefit for the baby or mother but proportionally associated with increased morbidity for both. Neonatal adverse outcomes in infants born before 39 weeks of gestation are increased and increase progressively as gestational age at birth declines Aim: To compare neonatal outcomes of elective caesarean section performed at or beyond completed 37 weeks of gestation with ≥ 38 weeks of gestation. Material and Method: This is a prospective observational study. During the period from July 2010 through April 2011 a total 134 neonates delivered by elective Cesareans at term and were divided into two groups, those who were born (early term) before 38 weeks of gestation (37+0 - 37+6) and those who were born (late term) at or greater than 38 weeks of gestation. We analyzed the following variables sex, number of maternal parities, mode of anesthesia, Apgar score at first and fifth minute, respiratory complications, hypothermia, hypoglycemia, feeding difficulties and admission to neonatal intensive care unit. Results: During the period of the study , 890 live births whether delivered by Cesarean section or normal vaginal delivery. Of these only 134 neonates fulfilling the inclusion criteria were included. About 50% of them were delivered before 38 weeks of gestation. We performed our analysis on those 134 neonates and we found a significant risk in the early Cesareans group in comparison to later group for development of respiratory complications (P=0.0001), hypothermia (P=0.0001) and feeding difficulty (P=0.0001). Conclusion: Significant reduction in the neonatal morbidities if the time of elective Cesareans is at completed 38 weeks or beyond 38 weeks of gestation. Further larger studies are needed to analyze the factors responsible for our new date regarding the hypothermia and feeding difficulty in neonates born electively by Cesareans before 38 completed weeks of gestation.

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