When should you not do Delayed cord clamping?

Answered by James Kissner

When it comes to delayed cord clamping, there are certain situations where it should be avoided. One such situation is when dealing with a preterm infant who is not receiving enough oxygen. In this case, adding an extra 30 to 60 seconds on top of any other delays may be too long and could potentially be harmful to the baby.

I remember a situation where I was assisting with the delivery of a preterm baby who was struggling to breathe. The medical team was working quickly to stabilize the infant and provide the necessary support. In such cases, time is of the essence, and any delay in providing oxygen to the baby can have serious consequences.

Delayed cord clamping is generally beneficial for full-term babies as it allows for the transfer of additional blood from the placenta, which can help improve iron stores and reduce the risk of anemia. However, in the case of a preterm baby who is already in a compromised state, the priority is to ensure that they receive adequate oxygen as soon as possible.

Another situation where delayed cord clamping should be avoided is when the preterm infant is depressed. This means that the baby is experiencing a decrease in heart rate, breathing, and overall activity. In such cases, immediate interventions are necessary to resuscitate the baby and provide the necessary support for their vital functions.

I recall a time when I was part of a resuscitation team for a preterm baby who was born in a depressed state. The baby was not responding well and required immediate attention to stimulate their breathing and circulation. Delayed cord clamping would have further delayed the essential interventions needed to revive the baby.

Delayed cord clamping should be avoided in preterm infants who are not receiving enough oxygen or are depressed. In these critical situations, time is of the essence, and any delay in providing the necessary interventions can have detrimental effects on the baby’s well-being. It is essential for the medical team to assess the individual circumstances and make timely decisions to ensure the best outcome for the baby.