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The Impact of Ambient Operating Room Temperature on Neonatal and Maternal Hypothermia and Associated Morbidities: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Duryea, Elaine L. MD; Nelson, David B. MD; Wyckoff, Myra H. MD; Grant, Erica N. MD; Tao, Weike MD; Sadana, Neeti MD; Chalak, Lina F. MD; McIntire, Donald D. PhD; Leveno, Kenneth J. MD

Obstetric Anesthesia Digest: March 2017 - Volume 37 - Issue 1 - p 24
doi: 10.1097/
Mechanisms, Equipment, Hazards

(Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2016;214:505.e1–505.7)

The World Health Organization defines mild hypothermia as a temperature of 36.0°C to 36.4°C (96.8°F to 97.5°F) and moderate to severe hypothermia as a temperature below <36.0°C (96.8°F). At the time of delivery, neonatal hypothermia can be caused by various factors, including the infant’s poor ability to regulate temperature owing to evaporative heat loss within a relatively cool delivery room. A condition common during cesarean delivery and in preterm infants, neonatal hypothermia has been associated with a range of morbidities in addition to increased neonatal mortality. Maternal hypothermia is also often uncomfortable for the surgical patient and has been associated with intraoperative and postoperative complications. There are various methods used to decrease the rates of neonatal and maternal hypothermia with varying levels of success. The objective of this study was to investigate whether an increase in operating room temperature at cesarean delivery resulted in a decrease in the rate of neonatal hypothermia and associated morbidities.

Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology (E.L.D., D.B.N., D.D.M., and K.J.L.), Pediatrics (M.H.W. and L.F.C.), and Anesthesia (E.N.G., W.T., and N.S.), University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX

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