Birth asphyxia in a Danish hospital uptake area was reduced after centralisation of deliveries

Ester Garne, Nathali Vain-Nielsen, Anne Vinkel-Hansen, Jesper Fenger-Grøn

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INTRODUCTION: Severe birth asphyxia is a major cause of neonatal morbidity and long-term disability and may be prevented. However, the consequences of organisational changes are rarely evaluated. METHODS: A cohort study comparing morbidity and mortality for term-born infants born with severe birth asphyxia, defined as an Apgar score ≤ 5 at 5 min., before and after major changes in the organisation of births in a Danish district. RESULTS: The study included 77 infants born in 1997-2004 and 40 infants born in 2009-2013 who were admitted to a neonatal intensive care unit with an Apgar score ≤ 5 at 5 min. The rate of severe birth asphyxia was 1.9 per 1,000 births in the early years and 2.5 per 1,000 births for the 2009-2013 period (p = 0.16). Mortality in the first three years of life with severe birth asphyxia was 0.24 per 1,000 births in 1997-2004 (ten deaths) and 0.06 per 1,000 births in 2009-2013 (one death) (p = 0.20). We observed a highly significant difference between the two periods in the proportion of infants with neonatal seizures and age at discharge after birth. The outcome of death or cerebral palsy was present in 17/77 (22%) in the early period and 3/40 (7.5%) in the more recent period (p < 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Over a relative short time period, death and disability due to severe birth asphyxia at term decreased significantly. This improvement is most likely explained by changes in the organisation of births in the hospital uptake area. as well as in treatment

OriginalsprogEngelsk
ArtikelnummerA5443
TidsskriftDanish Medical Journal
Vol/bind65
Udgave nummer2
Antal sider4
ISSN1603-9629
StatusUdgivet - 1. feb. 2018

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