• Neonatal respiratory extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) referrals.

      El-Khuffash, A; Kieran, E; Palmer, K; Molloy, E; Department of Paediatrics, National Maternity hospital, Holles St, Dublin 2. (2011-03)
      Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is a complex technique for providing life support in neonatal respiratory failure. T UK Collaborative ECMO trial demonstrated cost-effectiveness and substantial improvements in neurological morbidity and mortality. Currently, infants requiring ECMO in Ireland are referred to one of various centres in the UK and Scandinavia. We aimed to review the number of infants referred from Ireland for respiratory ECMO. All infants with a non-cardiac condition referred from Ireland for ECMO were reviewed for diagnosis and outcomes. Eleven infants required ECMO between June 2006 and January 2009 and were referred to the Scandinavian team for ECMO transport although one infant improved and did not require ECMO following the arrival of the team. Four infants died: one infant died prior to arrival of the ECMO team, 3 infants had fatal diagnoses and one infant with congenital diaphragmatic hernia received pre-op ECMO. The median (inter-quartile range) gestational age was 39.7 (38.3-40.7) weeks and birth weight of 3.7 (3.2-4.0) kg. The median age at the decision to transfer for ECMO was 13h (4-123) and the team arrived at 23 h (12-132). All infants had a normal cranial ultrasound and echo prior to ECMO and 2 infants had an abnormal MRI post-ECMO. The time on ECMO was 9 days (3-17) and total length of hospital stay was 32 d (23-36). There were no pre-ECMO clinical or biochemical
    • Saving Mothers' Lives: Reviewing maternal deaths to make motherhood safer: 2006-2008. The Eighth Report of the Confidential Enquiries into Maternal Deaths in the United Kingdom.

      Cantwell, Roch; Clutton-Brock, Thomas; Cooper, Griselda; Dawson, Andrew; Drife, James; Garrod, Debbie; Harper, Ann; Hulbert, Diana; Lucas, Sebastian; McClure, John; et al. (BJOG : an international journal of obstetrics and gynaecology, 2011-03)
      In the triennium 2006-2008, 261 women in the UK died directly or indirectly related to pregnancy. The overall maternal mortality rate was 11.39 per 100,000 maternities. Direct deaths decreased from 6.24 per 100,000 maternities in 2003-2005 to 4.67 per 100,000 maternities in 2006–2008 (p = 0.02). This decline is predominantly due to the reduction in deaths from thromboembolism and, to a lesser extent, haemorrhage. For the first time there has been a reduction in the inequalities gap, with a significant decrease in maternal mortality rates among those living in the most deprived areas and those in the lowest socio-economic group. Despite a decline in the overall UK maternal mortality rate, there has been an increase in deaths related to genital tract sepsis, particularly from community acquired Group A streptococcal disease. The mortality rate related to sepsis increased from 0.85 deaths per 100,000 maternities in 2003-2005 to 1.13 deaths in 2006-2008, and sepsis is now the most common cause of Direct maternal death. Cardiac disease is the most common cause of Indirect death; the Indirect maternal mortality rate has not changed significantly since 2003-2005. This Confidential Enquiry identified substandard care in 70% of Direct deaths and 55% of Indirect deaths. Many of the identified avoidable factors remain the same as those identified in previous Enquiries. Recommendations for improving care have been developed and are highlighted in this report. Implementing the Top ten recommendations should be prioritised in order to ensure the overall UK maternal mortality rate continues to decline.