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Arch Hellen Med, 34(5), September-October 2017, 656-662


Investigation of the relationship between elective cesarian section
and late preterm neonates (gestational age 36–37 weeks) and their morbidity

A. Galanopoulou,1 D. Niakas2
1Department of Neonatology – Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, General Hospital of Patras, Patras,
2School of Medicine, Νational and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Athens, Greece

OBJECTIVE To investigate the relationship between the elective cesarean section (CS) and iatrogenic prematurity in late preterm neonates (LP) with gestational age (GA) 36–37 weeks.

METHOD The records of the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) of a tertiary hospital were reviewed and the rates of CS during the period 2005–2015 were derived. The characteristics of LP neonates of GA 36–37 weeks, assessed by the Dubowitz criteria, delivered by CS during the period 2013–2015 were investigated.

RESULTS The CS rate increased from 37% in 2005 to 60.3% in 2015. LP infants of GA 36–37 weeks comprised 20.7% of the overall NICU population. Previous CS was recorded as the major reason for CS (36.9%). The GA was not known in 57.9%. The main reason for NICU admission in these infants was respiratory morbidity, at a rate of 34.4%.

CONCLUSIONS It is of prime importance that the guidelines on reasons for CS are followed. In addition, the guidelines for determination of GA should be applied when elective CS is planned. Finally, in order to restrict iatrogenic prematurity it is necessary for the current practices to be reviewed.

Key words: Elective cesarian section, Guidelines, Iatrogenic prematurity, Late preterm, Late preterm morbidity.

© Archives of Hellenic Medicine