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Infographic to raise awareness of infant thermal care after birth

In February 2018, an international team including Professor Fiona Alderdice, Senior Social Scientist at the NPEU, published a systematic review “Interventions to prevent hypothermia at birth in preterm and/or low birth weight infants” looking at how effective and safe the interventions used to prevent hypothermia in preterm and low birth weight babies are. Now the team have produced a simple infographic, designed by Graphic & Multimedia Designer Sarah Chamberlain, to convey the key findings of the paper clearly and quickly to those who care for preterm babies. It is also the first infographic to be published on the Cochrane Neonatal website.

Variation in association between breastfeeding and childhood wheeze

New research by Maria Quigley, Claire Carson and Yvonne Kelly helps shed light on why the association between breastfeeding and childhood wheeze varies in previous studies.

Using data on 10,126 children, they found that the association between breastfeeding and childhood wheeze (in the past year) varies according to the age at which wheezing is assessed. For example, babies who were breastfed for 6-9 months were less likely to experience wheezing at age 9 months, 3, and 5 years, but this ‘protective’ effect was less apparent at age 7 and 11 years (adjusted odds ratios 0.73, 0.78, 0.79, 0.84, 1.06 respectively). The pattern of wheeze throughout childhood can be described as the ‘wheezing phenotype’. Breastfeeding was also associated with a lower odds of an ‘early transient’ phenotype (where the child had wheezing at any age up to 5 years but not thereafter) but not with other wheezing phenotypes such as ‘late onset’ (any time from age 7 but not beforehand) or ‘persistent’ (any time up to age 5 and any time from age 7). These results suggest that the association between breastfeeding and subsequent wheeze varies according to age at which wheezing is assessed, and underlying wheezing phenotype.

The paper is published in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

Pre-existing medical conditions are an important factor in maternal deaths from pregnancy complications

A new study led by the NPEU and funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) has found that 70% of the increased risk associated with maternal death from pregnancy complications could be attributed to six factors.  The most important of these was pre-existing medical conditions, followed by previous pregnancy problems, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, inadequate use of antenatal care, substance misuse and Indian ethnicity. Read the full article.

Poorer women have worse experience of maternity care

Women living in the most deprived areas are less likely to have antenatal care and less likely to have a routine postnatal check, compared with women in more affluent areas. NPEU researchers Anthea Lindquist, Marian Knight and others carried out a study of over 5000 women taking part in the 2010 National Maternity Survey. Read the full paper in BJOG.

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