Having a premature baby can be a stressful situation for a variety of reasons, with one concern being a particular type of brain hemorrhage believed to be caused by low blood pressure. The latest research, published in Pediatrics, shows that for preterm babies born via C-section, a procedure known as umbilical cord milking may help provide better blood circulation in the brain and body, increase blood pressure, increase the amount of hemoglobin in the baby’s blood, and lower the baby’s risk of bleeding in the brain cavities as compared to delayed cord clamping. Umbilical cord milking involves grasping the unclamped umbilical cord and pushing the blood toward the newborn over the course of 20 seconds. Delayed cord clamping, a more passive procedure in which the umbilical cord is not clamped for 45-60 seconds after birth instead of immediately, allowing for the transfusion of iron-rich placental blood from mother to baby, has been a commonly used technique to help preemies. The study found no reported difference in blood flow or blood pressure between the two procedures for babies born vaginally.

+ Study

Lead image via Shutterstock

via Babycenter