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When is the right time to discuss delivery room research with parents?
Date:2/12/2014

ST. LOUIS For years, obtaining parental consent for clinical research regarding newborn resuscitation in the delivery room has been a challenge. Now, a Saint Louis University pediatric researcher is asking new mothers and pregnant women when doctors should seek parental permission to allow medical research related to delivery room treatments.

Marya Strand, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at Saint Louis University, has received a $45,000 grant from the Fleur de Lis Fund of SSM Cardinal Glennon Children's Foundation to study the public opinion on obtaining consent. Through this study, Strand and her team will try to find the best time to ask mothers to sign a consent form in order for the baby to participate in a delivery room study.

"Much of how we treat babies in the delivery room has not been studied, it is just how we have always done it," Strand said. "Some of the treatments we use need to be studied to make sure we are providing the best care to newborns."

About 10 percent of all babies require resuscitation after they are born, but only a portion of that group will be eligible for individual research studies.

Traditionally, clinical studies about best practices to care for troubled newborns require the mother's approval shortly after delivery. She either signs a form that authorizes her baby to be part of a specific medical research study or a form that waives consent, which could allow her baby to be placed in the study researchers see as most appropriate.

"When we have to perform resuscitation for the baby in the delivery room, the mother is preoccupied with her own medical condition. Labor and delivery is a stressful time for parents and it's difficult for her to process the information about the procedure that will be performed on her baby," Strand said.

"It is even harder for the parents to weigh the risks and benefits of participating in a study. Through this current research, we wan
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Contact: Riya Anandwala
ranandwa@slu.edu
314-977-8018
Saint Louis University
Source:Eurekalert  

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