Feb 19, 2002

Effect of general and epidural anaesthesia on thyroid hormones and immunity in neonates

Paediatric Anaesthesia
A GasparoniG Chirico


The aim of this study was to verify if variations of thyroid hormones related to circumstances of delivery and mode of maternal anaesthesia can contribute to neonatal neutrophil respiratory burst and natural killer cell activity. We evaluated 10 infants born by vaginal delivery (group A), 10 infants born by caesarean section after epidural anaesthesia with lidocaine (group B) and 10 infants born by caesarean section after general anaesthesia with sevoflurane (group C). A significant reduction of neutrophil respiratory burst test was found in groups A and C compared with group B. Natural killer cell (NK) activity with an effector : target ratio of 30 : 1 (NK30) and 10 : 1 (NK10) was significantly higher in group A compared with the B and C groups. In addition, thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) concentration was significantly reduced in group A compared with the B and C groups. A significant negative correlation was found between TSH and NK30 or NK10. Our results suggest that the mode of delivery and anaesthesia can significantly modify the endocrine-immune system in the newborn. Caesarean section delivery with regional anaesthesia seems to produce fewer modifications of neonatal immune function compared with general anaesthesia.

  • References16
  • Citations13


Mentioned in this Paper

Immune System
Neutrophil Band Cells
Methyl Ethers
Postcesarean Section
Body Parts - Epidural
ZFP90 gene
Epidural Anesthesia
Respiratory Burst
Group B Streptococcal Pneumonia

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