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Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2004 Feb;84(2):127-32.

Umbilical cord prolapse and perinatal outcomes.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Soroka University Medical Center, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel.



To determine obstetric risk factors and perinatal outcomes of pregnancies complicated by umbilical cord prolapse.


A population-based study was performed comparing all deliveries complicated by cord prolapse to deliveries without this complication. Statistical analysis was performed using multiple logistic regression models.


Prolapse of the umbilical cord complicated 0.4% (n=456) of all deliveries included in the study (n=121,227). Independent risk factors for cord prolapse identified by a backward, stepwise multivariate logistic regression model were: malpresentation (OR=5.1; 95% CI 4.1-6.3), hydramnios (OR=3.0; 95% CI 2.3-3.9), true knot of the umbilical cord (OR=3.0; 95% CI 1.8-5.1), preterm delivery (OR=2.1; 95% CI 1.6-2.8), induction of labor (OR=2.2; 95% CI 1.7-2.8), grandmultiparity (>five deliveries, OR=1.9; 95% CI 1.5-2.3), lack of prenatal care (OR=1.4; 95% CI 1.02-1.8), and male gender (OR=1.3; 95% CI 1.1-1.6). Newborns delivered after umbilical cord prolapse graded lower Apgar scores, less than 7, at 5 min (OR=11.9, 95% CI 7.9-17.9), and had longer hospitalizations (mean 5.4+/-3.5 days vs. 2.9+/-2.1 days; P<0.001). Moreover, higher rates of perinatal mortality were noted in the cord prolapse group vs. the control group (OR=6.4, 95% CI 4.5-9.0). Using a multiple logistic regression model controlling for possible confounders, such as preterm delivery, hydramnios, etc., umbilical cord prolapse was found to be an independent contributing factor to perinatal mortality.


Prolapse of the umbilical cord is an independent risk factor for perinatal mortality.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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