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in unstable neonates and to compare the predictive value of axillary temperature recording in unstable
neonates with that of healthy neonates.
Methodology: This cross-sectional and analytical study. Neonates from birth till the age of one month were
included in the study. Axillary temperature and rectal temperature were recorded upon arrival to the unit,
using digital thermometers.
Results: At arrival, 109 neonates were categorized as stable and 117 as unstable. There were no
statistically significant differences in their demographic data such as gender, gestational age, postnatal age
and weight of the neonates in the two groups. Over all mean axillary temperature was 97.020F (SD±2.5)
and mean rectal temperature was 97.990F (SD±2.21). The overall correlation between the axillary and
rectal temperature was 0.632 (p<0.001). A significant difference (P-value <0.001) in the Pearson
correlation (r) between axillary and rectal temperature recording in the two groups was found. A
significant difference was also observed in regression lines between the two groups.
Conclusions: Axillary temperature measurement is not a reliable method of documenting the arrival
temperature in clinically unstable neonates.
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