Nov 092017

Belfast Children’s Research team contributes to important paper published in this week’s New England Journal of Medicine

Congratulations to the Belfast Children’s research network team. Over the past 4 years they have been steadily recruiting preterm babies less than 30 weeks gestation into a randomised controlled trial of early versus delayed cord clamping which took place in 25 centres in seven countries around the world. 1566 infants were recruited internationally, with 82 coming from Belfast giving the largest ever study of this simple but important intervention.

The APTS trial was published with week in the New England Journal of Medicine, and contributing data from this study with all previous data from randomized trials in a meta-analysis published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology shows that delayed cord clamping saves lives.

“We estimate that for every thousand very preterm babies born more than ten weeks early, delayed clamping will save up to 100 additional lives compared with immediate clamping,” said the University of Sydney’s Associate Professor David Osborn, the review’s lead author and a neonatal specialist at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. “This means that, worldwide, using delayed clamping instead of immediate clamping can be expected to save between 11,000 and 100,000 additional lives every year.”

1. Tarnow-Mordi W et al. Delayed versus Immediate Cord Clamping in Preterm Infants. N Engl J Med 2017 doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1711281. [Epub ahead of print];

2. Fogarty M et al. Delayed Versus Early Umbilical Cord Clamping for Preterm Infants: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2017 Oct 30. pii: S0002-9378(17)31439-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2017.10.231. [Epub ahead of print]