I've written about delayed umbilical cord clamping before on MidwifeDiaries. But recently a lovely student get in touch to say she enjoyed the post, so I thought it was about time I did a video on it 🙂 This is a bitesized, whistlestop tour of all the info and evidence to do with delayed cord clamping, for your viewing pleasure!
Historically, no one thought about when it was best to clamp cords.
You'd make a big mess if you cut a cord before it stopped pulsating, so it wasn't a decision that needed to be made! As we've progressed in midwifery, we've improved resuscitation, PPH care, and lots more besides. But this means we are in the habit of quickly clamping the cord, and putting a plastic clip on a baby's umbilicus.
Delayed cord clamping has lots of benefits.
These include less low birth weight, and in premature babies, less chance of sepsis and intracranial haemorrhage. It also means babies are more likely to avoid anemia for the first 6 months of life. We know that anaemia in children can cause learning disabilities and poor motor function.
It's a stretch to say that delayed cord clamping can help with these issues - but it's certainly not impossible.
Jaundice is more of a risk for babies that have delayed cord clamping, but as long as there is access to phototherapy, these babies still do well. You can see the Cochrane review that assessed nearly 4000 mother/infant pairs to get these outcomes here.
And if you'd like to know about this topic in more detail, you can click here for a fantastic 'Grand Round' on YouTube. It's by Dr Nicholas Fogelson, and I really rate his blog!
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