On Cutting the Cord and Newborn Anemia

Our practice is very protective of that cord after the baby is born.  Midwives have always respected the natural process and it has been our standard of care to let that cord pulse for as long as needed to insure the newborn receives its full complement of blood.

Pic showing before and after the cord is done pulsing.  If you clamp that right away, the newborn misses quite a profusion of blood into it’s system

As often happens new research surfaces that backs up an natural process. We as midwives pat ourselves on the back for doing what we know makes sense.  We also are indignant about the lack of evidenced based care that hospitals provide.  Hospitals have not even begun to change their procedures on this issue and parents have to fight tooth and nail to get an OB to delay the clamping of babies born in the hospital.  Most OBs will refuse to delay the clamping stating antiquated, non evidence based reasons for this procedure


this article illustrates that just waiting 4 minutes before you clamp the cord can prevent anemia up to 4 MONTHS OF LIFE…

From the article….

Conclusions Delayed cord clamping, compared with early clamping, resulted in improved iron status and reduced prevalence of iron deficiency at 4 months of age, and reduced prevalence of neonatal anaemia, without demonstrable adverse effects. As iron deficiency in infants even without anaemia has been associated with impaired development, delayed cord clamping seems to benefit full term infants even in regions with a relatively low prevalence of iron deficiency anaemia.