Polyethylene Occlusive Wraps for Premature Newborns

Association has been found between lower temperatures at birth of a baby and subsequent mortality and morbidity. Therefore, maintaining normal body temperature becomes crucial. Preterm neonates, being more vulnerable because of less subcutaneous fat and immature stratum corneum, need extra care apart from adhering to warm chain.

Use of polyethylene wraps has been recommended for all preterm neonates less than 32 weeks. It is a food grade polyethylene wrap or bag in which baby can be wrapped just after birth followed by placing under radiant warmer for resuscitation as required. These wraps can be removed on admission to nursery. Wrapping reduces evaporative heat loss while allowing radiant heat delivery to the baby. This method is cheap and effective and can easily be used even in a resource limited setting.  

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