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Pooja Sapkota*, Mr. Prajwal Jung Pandey, Dr. Pradip Gyanwali


Introduction: Chlorhexidine 4% gel is specifically formulated for umbilical cord care and is safe and effective for reducing bacterial colonization on the skin and umbilical stump of the newborn. 7.1% chlorhexidine digluconate delivering 4% chlorhexidine was added to the 2013 World Health Organization (WHO) List of Essential Medicines for Children, specifically for umbilical cord care. Chlorhexidine can induce allergic contact dermatitis, immediate type hypersensitivity reaction, urticaria, photosensitivity, chemical burns and maculopapular erythema. Method: Hospital based descriptive and observational study was carried out in Paropakar Maternity and Women`s Hospital, Thapathali. The study was carried out for 5 months from September 2017 to February 2018. Total of 300 newborns whose umbilical cord was about to be removed were included in the study. Chlorhexidine gluconate gel was applied immediately after the removal of umbilical cord for the prophylactic treatment of umbilical cord infection. The newborns were observed for any adverse effects of drug and the suspected case of ADR was assessed by using Naranjo‟s ADR Probability Scale. Newborns were followed up during their stay in hospital. The newborns who were died before removal of umbilical cord, who were transferred to NICU and those newborns whose guardians were unwilling to participate were excluded from the study. Result: Among 300 newborns, there were 168 male and 132 female newborns. In the study group, 8.33% newborns were preterm and 91.67% were term newborns. The lowest weight of newborn was 1400 gm and highest weight was 4800 gm. On observation of the cord after the application of chlorhexidine 4% gel, among 300 newborns, no newborn showed adverse reaction to chlorhexidine. Conclusion: Chlorhexidine 4% gel was applied to umbilical cord of newborns and no adverse reaction was observed on single application of the drug. Hence the drug is safe for newborns.

Keywords: Chlorhexidine, newborns, umbilical cord, adverse drug reaction.

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