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Accuracy of a hand-held lactate meter in measuring umbilical cord blood lactate at all lactate levels

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DOI: 10.4236/ojog.2014.41009    3,828 Downloads   5,451 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Objective: Fetal scalp lactate has largely replaced pH analysis to assess intrapartum hypoxia. Many obstetrics units use hand-held lactate meters to measure umbilical blood because of its affordability and ease of use. We sought to investigate the agreement of Lactate ProTM with a reference method blood gas analyser and to determine its usefulness with a recommended cutoff value of 4.8 mmol/L. Methods: Prospective study carried out at a tertiary institution where 237 arterial and 233 venous samples from umbilical cords of 16 elective caesarean and 285 emergency deliveries were measured using Lactate ProTM and ABL735 Sesries Acid-Base analyser. Limits of agreement were analysed using Bland-Altman plots. Results: Lactate ProTM differentiated fewer deliveries as “high risk” (≥4.8 mmol/L) and more as “low risk” (<2.2 mmol/L). Limits of agreement for lactate values (as measured by Lactate ProTM) were –1.46 - 0.97 mmol/L for arterial lactate levels <4.8 mmol/L and –3.21 - 0.88 mmol/L for arterial lactate levels ≥ 4.8 mmol/L. Conclusion: There was a poorer agreement between the two devices at higher lactate values. Lactate ProTM underestimates by up to 3.2 mmol/L; a 4.8 mmol/L reading may actually signify a lactate level of 8.0 mmol/L, indicating severe metabolic acidosis. We caution the use of this device in assessing fetal lactate levels.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Chua, S. , Wong, M. , Su, T. and Reece, M. (2014) Accuracy of a hand-held lactate meter in measuring umbilical cord blood lactate at all lactate levels. Open Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 4, 47-53. doi: 10.4236/ojog.2014.41009.

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