Long-Term Heat, Cold Exposure Linked to Female Newborn Lung Function

Decreased functional residual capacity and increased respiratory rate seen with long-term heat and cold exposure for female newborns
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Medically Reviewed By:
Mark Arredondo, M.D.

MONDAY, March 20, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- Long-term heat and cold exposure is associated with lung function among female newborns, according to a study published online March 17 in JAMA Network Open.

Ariane Guilbert, from the Université Grenoble Alpes in La Tronche, France, and colleagues examined the association of prenatal and postnatal health or cold exposure with newborn lung function in a population-based cohort study, which recruited pregnant women in France between July 8, 2014, and July 24, 2017. Data were included for 343 mother-child dyads.

The researchers found that long-term heat exposure (95th versus 50th percentile of mean temperature [24 versus 12 degrees Celsius]) was associated with reduced functional residual capacity (–39.7 mL at gestational weeks 20 to 35 and weeks 0 to 4 after delivery) and increased respiratory rate (28.0/min at gestational weeks 14 to 35 and weeks 0 to 1 after delivery) among the 160 female newborns. Long-term exposure to cold (5th versus 50th percentile of mean temperature [1 versus 12 degrees Celsius]) was associated with lower reduced functional residual capacity (–21.9 mL at gestational weeks 15 to 29), lower tidal volume (–23.8 at gestational weeks 14 to 35 and weeks 0 to 4 after delivery), and increased respiratory rate (45.5/min at gestational weeks 6 to 35 and weeks 0 to 1 after delivery). No consistent association was seen for short-term exposure to cold or heat or for male newborns.

"Research must continue to better understand the long-term impact of unusual temperatures in early life and to raise awareness of health risks posed by heat and cold exposure during this period among pregnant women, mothers, and health care professionals," the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to Thorasys, Fisher & Paykel, and Restech.

Abstract/Full Text

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