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The optimal time to clamp the umbilical cord

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“No consensus exists about the optimal time to clamp the umbilical cord.”

Dr Ultee and coworkers in this issue of Heart link immediate cord clamping (ICC) to childhood mental retardation (MR) (see page F20).1

The study shows that ICC generates more anaemia than delayed cord clamping (DCC)—by removing more blood volume than removed by DCC. The amount of placental transfusion determines a neonate’s blood volume. ICC causes “hypotension, hypovolaemia and infant anaemia”,2 resulting in “cognitive deficits.” At what time will DCC prevent these injuries?

Physiological placental transfusion …

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  • Competing interests: None declared.

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