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Effect and safety of timing of cord clamping on neonatal hematocrit values and clinical outcomes in term infants: A randomized controlled trial



To evaluate the effect and safety of different umbilical cord clamping (UCC) timing.

Study design

This was a randomized trial of 720 term mothers/infants from the Tianjin Central Hospital of Obstetrics and Gynecology delivered from December 2014 to May 2015 and randomized to immediate cord clamping (ICC) within 15 s, delayed cord clamping (DCC) by 30, 60, 90, 120, 150, or 180 s, or when the umbilical cord pulsation ceased.


24 h after delivery, the mean infant hematocrit levels were 56.5, 57.3, 58.8, 59.7, 59.5, 59.7, 60.3, and 61.0% in the ICC, 30, 60, 90, 120, 150, and 180-second DCC, and no pulsation groups, respectively (P = 0.021, 0.001, 0.003, 0.001, <0.001, and <0.001, respectively; standard deviations ranging 5.4–8.7%). There was no significant difference between the 30-second DCC and ICC groups. No significant differences were found in other neonatal and maternal outcomes among these groups.


For term infants, DCC increases the hematocrit values, without apparent harmful effects on the infants and their mothers.

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We thank the midwives and obstetricians of the Tianjin Central Hospital of Obstetrics and Gynecology for their cooperation, as well as the parents who, with generosity, gave their consent. We are deeply indebted to Virender Rehan for revising the paper.


The research was part of the project of System of noninvasive prenatal screening and diagnosis methods for fetomaternal hemorrhage, supported by TianJin Municipal Science and Technology Commission.

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Correspondence to Xu Chen.

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Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.” (Ethical approval number: 2016KY020).

Additional information

Xu Chen and Xing Li are First authors.

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Chen, X., Li, X., Chang, Y. et al. Effect and safety of timing of cord clamping on neonatal hematocrit values and clinical outcomes in term infants: A randomized controlled trial. J Perinatol 38, 251–257 (2018).

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