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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2000 Jul;183(1):188-90.

Fetal erythropoietin levels in pregnancies complicated by meconium passage: does meconium suggest fetal hypoxia?

Author information

1
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of South Florida College of Medicine, Tampa, USA. obgaj@ttuhsc.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We sought to determine whether umbilical cord plasma erythropoietin levels were different in deliveries complicated by meconium passage and to determine whether this response is influenced by gestational age.

STUDY DESIGN:

Fetal erythropoietin levels were measured in 203 appropriately grown neonates at 37 to 43 weeks of gestation; among those, 70 had passed meconium.

RESULTS:

Meconium passage in the entire population was associated with elevated fetal erythropoietin levels (68 vs 31 mIU/mL; P <.001). Cord blood gases, pH, base deficit, and PO (2), as well as the 1- and 5-minute Apgar scores, were not different between the meconium and no-meconium groups. Gestational age and birth weights were significantly higher in the meconium group. Stepwise multiple regression analysis with meconium and gestational age used as the independent variables showed both meconium and gestational age to be independently associated with fetal erythropoietin levels (r = 0.356, F = 14.5; meconium, P <.001; gestational age, P <.01).

CONCLUSIONS:

These results suggest that meconium passage can be associated with chronic fetal hypoxia as demonstrated by elevated fetal erythropoietin levels, independent of gestational age.

PMID:
10920329
DOI:
10.1067/mob.2000.105343
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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