Association of Low Umbilical Cord pH and Hypoglycemia in Healthy Term Newborns: Should it Be a Part of Postnatal Screening?
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Hypoglycemia may lead to neurological impairment; therefore, high-risk newborns are screened postnatally. However, hypoglycemia monitoring protocols often do not include cord blood acidosis as a risk factor. The study aimed to find an association between asymptomatic cord blood acidosis and hypoglycemia. All healthy term infants born at McMaster Children Hospital, Hamilton, Canada, between October 2013 and September 2014, who had umbilical cord blood pH <7.0 or base excess <12 mmol/L were studied. Infants with evidence of hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, birth weights outside of 10th to 95th percentiles for gestation, mothers with preeclampsia, diabetes or taking a -blockers at the time of the birth were excluded. Hypoglycemia was defined as blood glucose <2.6 mmol/L in the first two hours of life. One hundred sixtysix infants met the cord blood gas criteria, but only 16 had hypoglycemia. Although infants with mild perinatal depression are at risk for hypoglycemia, a significant association could not be proved.