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Assessment of neonatal heart rate immediately after birth using digital stethoscope, handheld ultrasound and electrocardiography: an observational cohort study
  1. Bryony P Treston1,
  2. Jana Semberova1,2,
  3. Robert Kernan1,
  4. Erica Crothers1,
  5. Aoife Branagan1,
  6. Niamh O’Cathain1,
  7. Jan Miletin1,2,3,4
  1. 1 Department of Neonatology, Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
  2. 2 Department of Neonatology, Institute for the Care of Mother and Child, Prague, Czech Republic
  3. 3 UCD School of Medicine and Medical Science, Dublin, Ireland
  4. 4 Third School of Medicine, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
  1. Correspondence to Dr Bryony P Treston, Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital, Dublin 8, Ireland; trestonb{at}

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The extent and initiation of cardiopulmonary resuscitation of neonates in the delivery room are largely guided by neonatal heart rate (HR), with current guidelines recommending the use of ECG for HR monitoring during resuscitation.1–3 Our aim was to determine if handheld ultrasound (HUS) or digital stethoscope (DS) could offer a novel method of quickly and effectively assessing HR in the delivery suite.

Two physicians attended each delivery, one assessed the HR by stethoscope auscultation and the second assessed the HR using either HUS (Mortara, Signos RT Personal Ultrasound), DS (Littmann 3200, 3M, USA) or ECG (IntelliVue MP5, Philips, The Netherlands). The time to achieve first HR and the HR recorded were noted, then when both modalities were recording a simultaneous …

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