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Neonatal outcomes of non-vigorous neonates with meconium-stained amniotic fluid before and after change in tracheal suctioning recommendation



To evaluate the short-term outcomes of non-vigorous infants born through meconium-stained amniotic fluid (MSAF) before and after implementation of no-tracheal suctioning guidelines.

Study design

Single-center retrospective study of ≥36-week gestation neonates with MSAF.


During routine-suction era (9/2013-12/2014), 280/2306 neonates (12%) were born through MSAF and 39 (14%) were non-vigorous. Thirty (77%) of non-vigorous infants underwent tracheal suctioning. In the no-suction era (1/2017-12/2018), 282/2918 neonates (9.7%) were born through MSAF and 30 (10.6%) were non-vigorous and one needed intubation. Admissions for meconium aspiration syndrome (15% vs 53%) and respiratory distress (18% vs 57%) were significantly higher among non-vigorous infants in the no-suction era.


In this single-center study, non-vigorous infants born through MSAF without routine-tracheal suctioning had a higher incidence of NICU admission for MAS and respiratory distress compared to the routine-suction era. Multicenter randomized trials evaluating tracheal suction in non-vigorous infants with MSAF are warranted.

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