Published: 2018-03-27

Study on umbilical cord arterial blood gas analysis and cord blood lactate levels as predictors for adverse neonatal outcome: an observational study

Suman Shivanagouda Patil, Sukanya ., Suman Rath, Carolin Elizabeth George


Background: Perinatal asphyxia is a major cause of neonatal and childhood morbidity and mortality. Electronic foetal monitoring is used routinely to know the condition of the baby during Intrapartum period. Normal trace correlates highly with absence of acidemia at birth. Abnormal trace needs further evaluation. In order to better define the metabolic status of the new born, umbilical lactate levels have been measured. Objectives of this study were to determine the validity of umbilical cord blood lactate levels in predicting the adverse early neonatal outcome in babies with intrapartum foetal distress and to compare the validity of umbilical cord blood lactate and umbilical artery pH in predicting adverse neonatal outcome in babies with intrapartum foetal distress.

Methods: 295 pregnant women with abnormal CTG in active labour were subjected for estimation of cord blood lactate and umbilical artery pH immediately after delivery and were compared in predicting adverse neonatal outcome.

Results: In the present study specificity of serum lactate (97.7%) and umbilical artery pH (95.97%) was almost similar in babies with Apgar <7 at 1 minute and 5 minutes, but sensitivity of serum lactate (23.14%) and cord ph (31.4%) was less in babies with Apgar score ≤7 at 1 minute. Area under ROC showed serum lactate is more accurate in predicting adverse neonatal outcome compared to umbilical artery pH.

Conclusions: Umbilical cord blood lactate is more specific than umbilical artery pH in predicting adverse neonatal outcome. Area under ROC (at 95th percentile) shown serum lactate is more accurate in predicting adverse neonatal outcome compared to umbilical artery pH at birth.


Fetal distress, Hypertension in pregnancy, Stillbirths

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