Q: How long do you wait to clamp a cord?

Too many red cellsWhen I was doing neonates, it was considered good practice to get little babies spliced away from their Mother, given oxygen to breathe and wrapped up warm, all pretty damn quickly. I keep hearing rumours from my neonatally biased friends that perhaps there are other, better ways of doing things.

So – how long do you advise waiting until clamping the umbilical cord after delivery? Two, three minutes (where the baby can chill & develop polycythaemia?) or as little time as it takes you to get hold of a clamp (so the child can be deprived of the last few teaspoons of good fetal blood?).

A team at Northwick Park are examining the evidence for this question. If you can’t decide, or want to raise your opinions, feel free to comment below.

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