Assessing the tongue colour of newly born infants may help to predict the need for supplemental oxygen in the delivery room
2015 (English)In: Acta Paediatrica, ISSN 0803-5253, E-ISSN 1651-2227, Vol. 104, no 4, 356-359 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
AimIt takes several minutes for infants to become pink after birth. Preductal oxygen saturation (SpO(2)) measurements are used to guide the delivery of supplemental oxygen to newly born infants, but pulse oximetry is not available in many parts of the world. We explored whether the pinkness of an infants tongue provided a useful indication that supplemental oxygen was required. MethodsThis was a prospective observational study of infants delivered by Caesarean section. Simultaneous recording of SpO(2) and visual assessment of whether the tongue was pink or not was made at 1-7 and 10min after birth. ResultsThe 38 midwives and seven paediatric trainees carried out 271 paired assessments on 68 infants with a mean (SD) birthweight of 3214 (545) grams and gestational age of 38 (2) weeks. When the infant did not have a pink tongue, this predicted SpO(2) of less than70% with a sensitivity of 26% and a specificity of 96%. ConclusionTongue colour was a specific but insensitive sign that indicated when SpO(2) was less than70%. When the tongue is pink, it is likely that an infant has an SpO(2) of more than 70% and does not require supplemental oxygen.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Wiley , 2015. Vol. 104, no 4, 356-359 p.
Colour; Delivery room; Infant; Newborn; Pulse oximetry
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-117364DOI: 10.1111/apa.12914ISI: 000351744200015PubMedID: 25545583OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-117364DiVA: diva2:807869
Funding Agencies|National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Post Doctoral Fellowship [APP1012686]; Victorian Governments Operational Infrastructure Support Program; NHMRC Early Career Fellowship; NHMRC Practitioner Fellowship; NHMRC Program Grant ; European Respiratory Society through a Long Term Research Fellowship2015-04-242015-04-242016-01-07