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Fetal Pediatr Pathol. 2006 May-Jun;25(3):169-77.

Risk factors for maternal intrapartum fever and short-term neonatal outcome.

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Department of Neonatology, Edmond and Lili Safra Children's Hospital, Sheba Medical Center, and Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Gan, Israel.


Our objective was to determine maternal risk factors for developing intrapartum fever during term labor and to evaluate perinatal outcomes for infants exposed to mothers with fever. We performed a retrospective cohort study of 330 mothers and their infants and 330 controls in a single institution. Prolonged labor, nulliparity, maternal disease, and prolonged membrane rupture were found to be the most significant predictors for developing intrapartum fever. Caesarean section and instrumental delivery were more commonly performed. Bacteriuria was present in 10 % of the mothers. Babies born to mothers with fever were more likely to have meconium-stained amniotic fluid. More babies in this group were symptomatic (mostly dyspnea) on admission. No cases of neonatal infection were recorded, and no severe morbidity or mortality was present. We concluded that in low-risk asymptomatic intrapartum fever, infection is the least common explanation. Perinatal outcomes may be influenced by medical decisions due to fever onset, such as delivery mode. Short-term outcomes are favorable.

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