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Outcome of non-cooled asphyxiated infants with under-recognised or delayed-onset encephalopathy
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  • Published on:
    How to Recognise encephalopathy earlier?
    • Shabih Manzar, Neonatologist Ochsner LSU Health, Shreveport, LA, USA

    The article by Parmentier et al [1] highlights the role of Amplitude-integrated electroencephalography (aEEG) and early biomarkers in selecting infants for therapeutic hypothermia (TH). They also suggested the role of the Thompson score (TS) in asphyxiated infants. The problem with TS is that it is subjective. It consists of nine clinical signs: tone, level of consciousness, fits, posture, moro reflex, grasp, suck, respiration, and fontanelle, which could change over time [2]. Also, in the data presented by Parmentier et al [1], twenty-one (53%) infants did not have TS performed.

    It was surprising to note that four cases that had moderate neonatal encephalopathy (NE) were not treated with TH despite having seizures within the first 6 hours. The reason for not treatment was rapid recovery. What was the definition of rapid recovery? According to the published flow diagram for NE, the onset of seizure within 6 hours warrants TH [3].

    The definition of perinatal asphyxia used by Parmentier et al [1] was from a study in 2003 [4]. It was defined as an arterial cord blood pH <7.1, Apgar Score <7 at 5 min, or need for neonatal resuscitation. While the analysis was done with pH of < 7 and > 7 [(Table 1) 1]. A pH of 7.1 and Apgar of 7 at 5 min is higher than the definition/criteria used in the TH trial [5].


    1. Parmentier CEJ, Steggerda SJ, Weeke LC, Rijken M, De Vries LS, Groenendaal F. Outcome of non-cooled asphyxiated infants w...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.