Measurement of the urinary lactate: creatinine ratio for the early identification of newborn infants at risk for hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy

Chao Ching Huang, Shan Tair Wang, Ying Chao Chang, Kung Ping Lin, Pei Lin Wu

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Background: Newborn infants with perinatal asphyxia are prone to the development of hypoxicischemic encephalopathy. There are no reliable methods for identifying infants at risk for this disorder. Methods: We measured the ratio of lactate to creatinine in urine by proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy within 6 hours and again 48 to 72 hours after birth in 58 normal infants and 40 infants with asphyxia. The results were correlated with the subsequent presence or absence of hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. Results: Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy did not develop in any of the normal newborns but did develop in 16 of the 40 newborns with asphyxia. Within six hours after birth, the mean (±SD) ratio of urinary lactate to creatinine was 16.76±27.38 in the infants who subsequently had hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, as compared with 0.09±0.02 in the normal infants (P

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)328-335
Number of pages8
JournalNew England Journal of Medicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jul 29 1999
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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