Background Deferring cord clamping will allow blood flow between the placenta and baby to continue for a few minutes after birth; net flow is known as ‘placental transfusion’. The Cochrane review suggests deferring cord clamping for preterm births may be beneficial.
We have developed strategies for providing initial neonatal care at the mother’s bedside with the cord intact. The Cord Pilot Trial aims to assess whether it is feasible to conduct a large randomised trial of timing of cord clamping in the UK.
Methods Women expected to have a livebirth before 32 weeks are eligible. Women are allocated to cord clamping either within 20 seconds or after at least 2 min (with neonatal care at the bedside). Consent is by two pathways; written consent during pregnancy, or oral assent at time of birth with written consent after birth. Follow up is when the children are age two years (corrected). Recruitment is for one year at 8 sites. Target sample size 100–110 women.
Results Recruitment will close on 28 February 2014, although 110 women had been randomised by 23 January. Progress against the pre-specified feasibility targets will be presented: recruitment by site and as a proportion of eligible births; spectrum of gestational age and neonatal outcome among recruits; compliance with the interventions; completeness of data; and views of participants.
Conclusions Implications for the design and conduct of a large multicentre trial will be discussed.
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