Journal Article

Brief report. Risk factors associated with neonatal hypothermia during cleaning of newborn infants in labour rooms

F-C Cheah and N-Y Boo

in Journal of Tropical Pediatrics

Volume 46, issue 1, pages 46-50
Published in print February 2000 | ISSN: 0142-6338
Published online February 2000 | e-ISSN: 1465-3664 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/tropej/46.1.46
Brief report. Risk factors associated with neonatal hypothermia during cleaning of newborn infants in labour rooms

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Cleaning newborn infants with coconut oil shortly after birth is a common practice in Malaysian labour rooms. This study aimed: (1) to determine whether this practice was associated with a significant decrease in the core temperature of infants; and (2) to identify significant risk factors associated with neonatal hypothermia. The core temperature of 227 randomly selected normal-term infants immediately before and after cleaning in labour rooms was measured with an infrared tympanic thermometer inserted into their left ears. Their mean post-cleaning body temperature (36.6°C, SD=1.0) was significantly lower than their mean pre-cleaning temperature (37.1°C, SD=1.0; p<0.001). Logistic regression analysis showed that the risk factors significantly associated with pre-cleaning hypothermia (<36.5°C) were: (1) not being placed under radiant warmer before cleaning p=0.03); and (2) lower labour room temperature (p<0.001). Logistic regression analysis also showed that the risk factors significantly associated with post-cleaning hypothermia were (1) lower labour room temperature (p<0.001); (2) lower pre-cleaning body temperature (p0.001); and (3) longer duration of cleaning (p=0.002). In conclusion, to prevent neonatal hypothermia, labour room temperature should be set at a higher level and cleaning infants in the labour room should be discouraged.

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Subjects: Paediatrics

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