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Reducing the risk of cerebral palsy in preterm babies

Posted: - 21st October 2020

We estimate that  six cases of cerebral palsy have been prevented as a result of 175 eligible preterm mothers receiving a dose of Magnesium Sulphate during childbirth.

In Yorkshire and the Humber, we are working closely with all three regional Local Maternity Systems to hold launch events to engage local maternity teams with the programme.

Babies born too soon (preterm) are at an increased risk of dying in the first weeks of life and those who survive may suffer from varying degrees of cerebral palsy that can cause blindness, deafness or other physical disabilities.

Designed in partnership with families and staff, Preventing Cerebral Palsy in PreTerm Labour (PReCePT) is a national AHSN quality improvement project, aimed at increasing antenatal administration of magnesium sulphate to mothers during preterm labour.

Between 4,000 and 5,000 babies are born before 30 weeks’ gestation in England per year and stand to benefit from full national roll out of the PReCePT programme. Successful scaling up of PReCePT is likely to prevent several hundred cases of cerebral palsy per year, based on highest grade evidence.

Although our work on this programme ended in March 2020, all three local Maternity Systems and the Maternity Clinical Network in our region continue to support maternity units across Yorkshire and the Humber to make sure the potential prevention of cerebral palsy through the administration of Magnesium Sulphate continues in the future.

For more information please contact us

To find out more about our programmes of work read our Impact Report