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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 23-26

Measurements of Rates and Parameters in Newborn Babies Fit for Discharge at a Tertiary Hospital in North-Western Nigeria

Department of Paediatrics, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Shika, Zaria, Kaduna State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Jamilu Abdullahi Faruk
Department of Paediatrics, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, P.M.B. 06, Shika, Zaria, Kaduna State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/NJGP.NJGP_18_20

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Introduction: The arrival of a newborn brings a mixture of excitement and anxiety, due to a wide variation in physical and physiologic findings. Neonatal morbidity and mortality remain alarmingly high in North-western Nigeria, and failure to recognize a sick neonate that needs medical attention contributes to these dire statistics. Therefore, an understanding of the variations of newborn parameters allows health-care personnel to address families' concerns and support parents. Materials and Methods: The study was a retrospective descriptive review of birth records, of live neonates delivered at a tertiary hospital who were referred for a pediatrician's assessment and subsequently certified stable and fit for discharge. Their parameters were described, and sub-groups were compared. Results: There were 224 newborns examined, with a male:female ratio of 1:1.1. Majority (99.1%) of the babies were examined within 24 h of life, and the mode of delivery was through cesarean section in 70.1% of the newborns. Their mean gestational age was 39.3 (±1.2 standard deviation [SD]) weeks, with 37 (16.5%) late preterm and 187 (83.5%) term babies. They had birth weight 3.1 kg (±0.6 SD) and 2.6 (±0.6 SD), P = 0.0001; length 49.2 cm (±2.9 SD) and 47.0 (±3.0 SD), P = 0.017; occipitofrontal circumference 34.6 cm (±1.7SD) and 33.6 (±1.3 SD), P = 0.001; respiratory rate 52 (±12 SD) and 54 (±14 SD), cycles (cpm) P = 0.291; heart rate 141 (±13SD) and 145 (±15SD) beats (bpm), P = 0.129; for the term and late preterm babies, respectively. Conclusions: Referred newborns who were assessed and certified stable and discharged, had comparable parameters, with average respiratory rate of 51 cycles, and heart rate of 140 beats. There were no statistical differences in the vital signs between late preterm and term newborns.

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