OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the reliability of fluoride levels in the umbilical cord as reflecting neonate fluoride status.
DESIGN: Prospective study of fluoride levels of pregnant women at term and their neonates.
SETTING: Delivery room and maternity unite of Hadassah Hospital Mount Scopus.
PATIENTS: Fluoride serum levels were determined in the sera of 20 women with normal pregnancies at term, during delivery, in the corresponding mixed cord sera and neonatal sera at 24 hours after delivery.
RESULTS: The mean maternal fluoride serum level was 0.0303 microgram/ml (SD 9.015), mean cord fluoride serum level 0.0183 microgram/ml (SD 0.012), and mean neonatal fluoride serum 0.0380 microgram/ml (SD 0.016).
CONCLUSION: The significantly (p < 0.001) low mixed cord serum levels of fluoride as compared with neonatal and maternal serum levels may be explained by placental sequestration of fluoride. It is suggested that cord serum fluoride levels to not reflect fetal fluoride status.