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1.  Prediction of Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia by Postnatal Age in Extremely Premature Infants 
Rationale: Benefits of identifying risk factors for bronchopulmonary dysplasia in extremely premature infants include providing prognostic information, identifying infants likely to benefit from preventive strategies, and stratifying infants for clinical trial enrollment.
Objectives: To identify risk factors for bronchopulmonary dysplasia, and the competing outcome of death, by postnatal day; to identify which risk factors improve prediction; and to develop a Web-based estimator using readily available clinical information to predict risk of bronchopulmonary dysplasia or death.
Methods: We assessed infants of 23–30 weeks' gestation born in 17 centers of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network and enrolled in the Neonatal Research Network Benchmarking Trial from 2000–2004.
Measurements and Main Results: Bronchopulmonary dysplasia was defined as a categorical variable (none, mild, moderate, or severe). We developed and validated models for bronchopulmonary dysplasia risk at six postnatal ages using gestational age, birth weight, race and ethnicity, sex, respiratory support, and FiO2, and examined the models using a C statistic (area under the curve). A total of 3,636 infants were eligible for this study. Prediction improved with advancing postnatal age, increasing from a C statistic of 0.793 on Day 1 to a maximum of 0.854 on Day 28. On Postnatal Days 1 and 3, gestational age best improved outcome prediction; on Postnatal Days 7, 14, 21, and 28, type of respiratory support did so. A Web-based model providing predicted estimates for bronchopulmonary dysplasia by postnatal day is available at https://neonatal.rti.org.
Conclusions: The probability of bronchopulmonary dysplasia in extremely premature infants can be determined accurately using a limited amount of readily available clinical information.
doi:10.1164/rccm.201101-0055OC
PMCID: PMC3136997  PMID: 21471086
bronchopulmonary dysplasia; prematurity; low-birth-weight infant
2.  Neonatal Outcomes of Extremely Preterm Infants From the NICHD Neonatal Research Network 
Pediatrics  2010;126(3):443-456.
OBJECTIVE
This report presents data from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network on care of and morbidity and mortality rates for very low birth weight infants, according to gestational age (GA).
METHODS
Perinatal/neonatal data were collected for 9575 infants of extremely low GA (22–28 weeks) and very low birth weight (401–1500 g) who were born at network centers between January 1, 2003, and December 31, 2007.
RESULTS
Rates of survival to discharge increased with increasing GA (6% at 22 weeks and 92% at 28 weeks); 1060 infants died at ≤ 12 hours, with most early deaths occurring at 22 and 23 weeks (85% and 43%, respectively). Rates of prenatal steroid use (13% and 53%, respectively), cesarean section (7% and 24%, respectively), and delivery room intubation (19% and 68%, respectively) increased markedly between 22 and 23 weeks. Infants at the lowest GAs were at greatest risk for morbidities. Overall, 93% had respiratory distress syndrome, 46% patent ductus arteriosus, 16% severe intraventricular hemorrhage, 11% necrotizing enterocolitis, and 36% late-onset sepsis. The new severity-based definition of bronchopulmonary dysplasia classified more infants as having bronchopulmonary dysplasia than did the traditional definition of supplemental oxygen use at 36 weeks (68%, compared with 42%). More than one-half of infants with extremely low GAs had undetermined retinopathy status at the time of discharge. Center differences in management and outcomes were identified.
CONCLUSION
Although the majority of infants with GAs of ≥24 weeks survive, high rates of morbidity among survivors continue to be observed.
doi:10.1542/peds.2009-2959
PMCID: PMC2982806  PMID: 20732945
extremely low gestation; very low birth weight; morbidity; death
3.  Cytokines Associated with Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia or Death in Extremely Low Birth Weight Infants 
Pediatrics  2009;123(4):1132-1141.
Background
Inflammation mediated by cytokines may be important in the pathogenesis of bronchopulmonary dysplasia and the competing outcome of death in extremely low birth weight infants.
Objective
To develop multi-variable logistic regression models for the outcome of bronchopulmonary dysplasia and/or death at 36w post-menstrual age using clinical and cytokine data from the first 28 days.
Methods
1067 extremely low birth weight infants in the Neonatal Research Network of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development had 25 cytokines measured from blood collected within 4 h of birth and on days 3, 7, 14, and 21. Stepwise regression using peak values of the 25 cytokines and 15 clinical variables identified variables associated with BPD/death. Multi-variable logistic regression was done for bronchopulmonary dysplasia/death using variables selected by stepwise regression. Similar analyses were also done using average cytokine values from days 0–21, days 0–3, and from days 14–21.
Results
Of 1062 infants with available data, 606 infants developed bronchopulmonary dysplasia or died. Combining results from all models, bronchopulmonary dysplasia/death was associated with higher concentrations of interleukins-1β, -6, -8, -10, and interferon-γ and lower concentrations of interleukin-17, RANTES, and tumor necrosis factor-β. Compared to models with only clinical variables, addition of cytokine data improved predictive ability by a statistically significant but clinically modest magnitude.
Conclusions
The overall pattern of cytokines suggests bronchopulmonary dysplasia/death may be associated with impairment in the transition from the innate immune response mediated by neutrophils to the adaptive immune response mediated by T-lymphocytes.
doi:10.1542/peds.2008-0526
PMCID: PMC2903210  PMID: 19336372
Logistic models; Infant; premature; Predictive value of tests
4.  Chorioamnionitis and Early Childhood Outcomes among Extremely Low-Gestational-Age Neonates 
JAMA pediatrics  2014;168(2):137-147.
Importance
Chorioamnionitis is strongly linked to preterm birth and to neonatal infection. The association between histological and clinical chorioamnionitis and cognitive, behavioral and neurodevelopmental outcomes among extremely preterm neonates is less clear. We evaluated the impact of chorioamnionitis on 18-22 month neurodevelopmental outcomes in a contemporary cohort of extremely preterm neonates.
Objective
To compare the neonatal and neurodevelopmental outcomes of three groups of extremely-low-gestational-age infants with increasing exposure to perinatal inflammation: no chorioamnionitis, histological chorioamnionitis alone, or histological plus clinical chorioamnionitis.
Design
Longitudinal observational study.
Setting
Sixteen centers of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network.
Participants
2390 extremely preterm infants born <27 weeks' gestational age between January 1, 2006 and December 31, 2008 with placental histopathology and 18-22 months' corrected age follow-up data were eligible.
Main exposure
Chorioamnionitis
Main Outcome Measures
Outcomes included cerebral palsy, gross motor functional limitation, behavioral scores (according to the Brief Infant-Toddler Social and Emotional Assessment), cognitive and language scores (according to the Bayley Scales of Infant Development, 3rd-Edition) and composite measures of death/neurodevelopmental impairment. Multivariable logistic and linear regression models were developed to assess the association between chorioamnionitis and outcomes while controlling for important variables known at birth.
Results
Neonates exposed to chorioamnionitis had a lower gestational age (GA) and had higher rates of early-onset sepsis and severe periventricular-intraventricular hemorrhage as compared with unexposed neonates. In multivariable models evaluating death and neurodevelopmental outcomes, inclusion of gestational age in the model diminished the association between chorioamnionitis and adverse outcomes. Still, histological+clinical chorioamnionitis was associated with increased risk of cognitive impairment as compared with no chorioamnionitis (Adjusted OR 2.4, [1.3- 4.3] without GA; Adjusted OR 2.0, [1.1-3.6] with GA as a covariate). Histological chorioamnionitis alone was associated with lower odds of death/neurodevelopmental impairment as compared with histological+clinical chorioamnionitis (Adjusted OR 0.68, [0.52-0.89] without GA; 0.66, [0.49-0.89] with GA). Risk of behavioral problems did not differ statistically between groups.
Conclusions and Relevance
Antenatal exposure to chorioamnionitis is associated with altered odds of cognitive impairment and death/neurodevelopmental impairment in extremely preterm infants.
doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.4248
PMCID: PMC4219500  PMID: 24378638
chorioamnionitis; preterm; neurodevelopmental impairment; outcome
5.  Early CPAP versus Surfactant in Extremely Preterm Infants 
The New England journal of medicine  2010;362(21):1970-1979.
Background
There are limited data to inform the choice between early treatment with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) and early surfactant treatment as the initial support for extremely-low-birth-weight infants.
Methods
We performed a randomized, multicenter trial, with a 2-by-2 factorial design, involving infants who were born between 24 weeks 0 days and 27 weeks 6 days of gestation. Infants were randomly assigned to intubation and surfactant treatment (within 1 hour after birth) or to CPAP treatment initiated in the delivery room, with subsequent use of a protocol-driven limited ventilation strategy. Infants were also randomly assigned to one of two target ranges of oxygen saturation. The primary outcome was death or bronchopulmonary dysplasia as defined by the requirement for supplemental oxygen at 36 weeks (with an attempt at withdrawal of supplemental oxygen in neonates who were receiving less than 30% oxygen).
Results
A total of 1316 infants were enrolled in the study. The rates of the primary outcome did not differ significantly between the CPAP group and the surfactant group (47.8% and 51.0%, respectively; relative risk with CPAP, 0.95; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.85 to 1.05) after adjustment for gestational age, center, and familial clustering. The results were similar when bronchopulmonary dysplasia was defined according to the need for any supplemental oxygen at 36 weeks (rates of primary outcome, 48.7% and 54.1%, respectively; relative risk with CPAP, 0.91; 95% CI, 0.83 to 1.01). Infants who received CPAP treatment, as compared with infants who received surfactant treatment, less frequently required intubation or postnatal corticosteroids for bronchopulmonary dysplasia (P<0.001), required fewer days of mechanical ventilation (P = 0.03), and were more likely to be alive and free from the need for mechanical ventilation by day 7 (P = 0.01). The rates of other adverse neonatal outcomes did not differ significantly between the two groups.
Conclusions
The results of this study support consideration of CPAP as an alternative to intubation and surfactant in preterm infants. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00233324.)
doi:10.1056/NEJMoa0911783
PMCID: PMC3071534  PMID: 20472939
6.  Neurodevelopmental Outcomes in the Early CPAP and Pulse Oximetry Trial 
The New England journal of medicine  2012;367(26):2495-2504.
BACKGROUND
Previous results from our trial of early treatment with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) versus early surfactant treatment in infants showed no significant difference in the outcome of death or bronchopulmonary dysplasia. A lower (vs. higher) target range of oxygen saturation was associated with a lower rate of severe retinopathy but higher mortality. We now report longer-term results from our prespecified hypotheses.
METHODS
Using a 2-by-2 factorial design, we randomly assigned infants born between 24 weeks 0 days and 27 weeks 6 days of gestation to early CPAP with a limited ventilation strategy or early surfactant administration and to lower or higher target ranges of oxygen saturation (85 to 89% or 91 to 95%). The primary composite outcome for the longer-term analysis was death before assessment at 18 to 22 months or neurodevelopmental impairment at 18 to 22 months of corrected age.
RESULTS
The primary outcome was determined for 1234 of 1316 enrolled infants (93.8%); 990 of the 1058 surviving infants (93.6%) were evaluated at 18 to 22 months of corrected age. Death or neurodevelopmental impairment occurred in 27.9% of the infants in the CPAP group (173 of 621 infants), versus 29.9% of those in the surfactant group (183 of 613) (relative risk, 0.93; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.78 to 1.10; P = 0.38), and in 30.2% of the infants in the lower-oxygen-saturation group (185 of 612), versus 27.5% of those in the higher-oxygen-saturation group (171 of 622) (relative risk, 1.12; 95% CI, 0.94 to 1.32; P = 0.21). Mortality was increased with the lower-oxygen-saturation target (22.1%, vs. 18.2% with the higher-oxygen-saturation target; relative risk, 1.25; 95% CI, 1.00 to 1.55; P = 0.046).
CONCLUSIONS
We found no significant differences in the composite outcome of death or neurodevelopmental impairment among extremely premature infants randomly assigned to early CPAP or early surfactant administration and to a lower or higher target range of oxygen saturation. (Funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; SUPPORT ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00233324.)
doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1208506
PMCID: PMC4140695  PMID: 23268664
7.  Early-Childhood Neurodevelopmental Outcomes Are Not Improving for Infants Born at <25 Weeks' Gestational Age 
Pediatrics  2011;127(1):62-70.
OBJECTIVE:
We compared neurodevelopmental outcomes at 18 to 22 months' corrected age of infants born with extremely low birth weight at an estimated gestational age of <25 weeks during 2 periods: 1999–2001 (epoch 1) and 2002–2004 (epoch 2).
PATIENTS AND METHODS:
We conducted a multicenter, retrospective analysis of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network. Perinatal and neonatal variables and outcomes were compared between epochs. Neurodevelopmental outcomes at 18 to 22 months' corrected age were evaluated with neurologic exams and Bayley Scales of Infant Development II. Logistic regression analyses determined the independent risk of epoch for adverse outcomes.
RESULTS:
Infant survival was similar between epochs (epoch 1, 35.4%, vs epoch 2, 32.3%; P = .09). A total of 411 of 452 surviving infants in epoch 1 and 405 of 438 surviving infants in epoch 2 were evaluated at 18 to 22 months' corrected age. Cesarean delivery (P = .03), surgery for patent ductus arteriosus (P = .004), and late sepsis (P = .01) were more common in epoch 2, but postnatal steroid use was dramatically reduced (63.5% vs 32.8%; P < .0001). Adverse outcomes at 18 to 22 months' corrected age were common in both epochs. Moderate-to-severe cerebral palsy was diagnosed in 11.1% of surviving infants in epoch 1 and 14.9% in epoch 2 (adjusted odds ratio [OR]: 1.52 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.86–2.71]; P = .15), the Mental Developmental Index was <70 in 44.9% in epoch 1 and 51% in epoch 2 (OR: 1.30 [95% CI: 0.91–1.87]; P = .15), and neurodevelopmental impairment was diagnosed in 50.1% of surviving infants in epoch 1 and 58.7% in epoch 2 (OR: 1.4 [95% CI: 0.98–2.04]; P = .07).
CONCLUSIONS:
Early-childhood outcomes for infants born at <25 weeks' estimated gestational age were unchanged between the 2 periods.
doi:10.1542/peds.2010-1150
PMCID: PMC3375467  PMID: 21187312
extremely preterm; neurodevelopmental; outcome; cerebral palsy; Bayley Scales of Infant Development II
8.  Using a Count of Neonatal Morbidities to Predict Poor Outcome in Extremely Low Birth Weight Infants: Added Role of Neonatal Infection 
Pediatrics  2009;123(1):313-318.
OBJECTIVE
A count of 3 neonatal morbidities (bronchopulmonary dysplasia, brain injury, and severe retinopathy of prematurity) strongly predict the risk of death or neurosensory impairment in extremely low birth weight infants who survive to 36 weeks’ postmenstrual age. Neonatal infection has also been linked with later impairment. We examined whether the addition of infection to the count of 3 neonatal morbidities further improves the prediction of poor outcome.
METHODS
We studied 944 infants who participated in the Trial of Indomethacin Prophylaxis in Preterms and survived to 36 weeks’ postmenstrual age. Culture-proven sepsis, meningitis, and stage II or III necrotizing enterocolitis were recorded prospectively. We investigated the incremental prognostic importance of neonatal infection by adding terms for the different types of infection to a logistic model that already contained terms for the count of bronchopulmonary dysplasia, brain injury, and severe retinopathy. Poor outcome at 18 months of age was death or survival with 1 or more of the following: cerebral palsy, cognitive delay, severe hearing loss, and bilateral blindness.
RESULTS
There were 414 (44%) infants with at least 1 episode of infection or necrotizing enterocolitis. Meningitis and the presence of any type of infection added independent prognostic information to the morbidity-count model. The odds ratio associated with infection or necrotizing enterocolitis in this model was 50% smaller than the odds ratio associated with each count of the other 3 neonatal morbidities. Meningitis was rare and occurred in 22 (2.3%) of 944 infants.
CONCLUSIONS
In this cohort of extremely low birth weight infants who survived to 36 weeks’ postmenstrual age, neonatal infection increased the risk of a late death or survival with neurosensory impairment. However, infection was a weaker predictor of poor outcome than bronchopulmonary dysplasia, brain injury, and severe retinopathy.
doi:10.1542/peds.2008-0377
PMCID: PMC2829863  PMID: 19117897
extremely low birth weight infant; infection; bronchopulmonary dysplasia; brain injury; retinopathy; neurosensory impairment
9.  Neurodevelopmental Outcomes of Extremely Low Gestational Age Neonates with Low Grade Periventricular-Intraventricular Hemorrhage 
JAMA pediatrics  2013;167(5):451-459.
Objective
To compare neurodevelopmental outcomes at 18–22 months corrected age for extremely low gestational age infants with low grade (Grade 1 or 2) periventricular-intraventricular hemorrhage to infants with either no hemorrhage or severe (Grade 3 or 4) hemorrhage on cranial ultrasound.
Design
Longitudinal observational study
Setting
Sixteen centers of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network
Participants
1472 infants born at <27 weeks gestational age between 2006–2008 with ultrasound results within the first 28 days of life and surviving to 18–22 months with complete follow-up assessments were eligible.
Main Exposure
Low grade periventricular-intraventricular hemorrhage
Outcome Measures
Outcomes included cerebral palsy, gross motor functional limitation, Bayley III cognitive and language scores, and composite measures of neurodevelopmental impairment. Regression modeling evaluated the association of hemorrhage severity with adverse outcomes while controlling for potentially confounding variables and center differences.
Results
Low grade hemorrhage was not associated with significant differences in unadjusted or adjusted risk of any adverse neurodevelopmental outcome compared to infants without hemorrhage. Compared with low grade hemorrhage, severe hemorrhage was associated with decrease in adjusted continuous cognitive (−3.91, [95% Confidence Interval [CI]: −6.41, −1.42]) and language (−3.19 [−6.19, −0.19]) scores as well as increased odds of each adjusted categorical outcome except severe cognitive impairment (OR: 1.46 [0.74, 2.88]) and mild language impairment (OR: 1.35 [0.88, 2.06]).
Conclusion
At 18–22 months, the neurodevelopmental outcomes of extremely low gestational age infants with low grade periventricular-intraventricular hemorrhage are not significantly different from those without hemorrhage.
doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.866
PMCID: PMC3953349  PMID: 23460139
10.  Trends in survival among extremely-low-birth-weight infants (less than 1000 g) without significant bronchopulmonary dysplasia 
BMC Pediatrics  2012;12:63.
Objective
The aim of this study was to analyze the evolution from 1997 to 2009 of survival without significant (moderate and severe) bronchopulmonary dysplasia (SWsBPD) in extremely-low-birth-weight (ELBW) infants and to determine the influence of changes in resuscitation, nutrition and mechanical ventilation on the survival rate.
Study design
In this study, 415 premature infants with birth weights below 1000 g (ELBW) were divided into three chronological subgroups: 1997 to 2000 (n = 65), 2001 to 2005 (n = 178) and 2006 to 2009 (n = 172).
Between 1997 and 2000, respiratory resuscitation in the delivery room was performed via a bag and mask (Ambu®, Ballerup, Sweden) with 40-50% oxygen. If this procedure was not effective, oral endotracheal intubation was always performed. Pulse oximetry was never used. Starting on January 1, 2001, a change in the delivery room respiratory policy was established for ELBW infants. Oxygenation and heart rate were monitored using a pulse oximeter (Nellcor®) attached to the newborn’s right hand. If resuscitation was required, ventilation was performed using a face mask, and intermittent positive pressure was controlled via a ventilator (Babylog2, Drägger). In 2001, a policy of aggressive nutrition was also initiated with the early provision of parenteral amino acids. We used standardized parenteral nutrition to feed ELBW infants during the first 12–24 hours of life. Lipids were given on the first day. The glucose concentration administered was increased by 1 mg/kg/minute each day until levels reached 8 mg/kg/minute. Enteral nutrition was started with trophic feeding of milk. In 2006, volume guarantee treatment was instituted and administered together with synchronized intermittent mandatory ventilation (SIMV + VG). The complications of prematurity were treated similarly throughout the study period. Patent ductus arteriosus was only treated when hemodynamically significant. Surgical closure of the patent ductus arteriosus was performed when two courses of indomethacin or ibuprofen were not sufficient to close it.
Mild BPD were defined by a supplemental oxygen requirement at 28 days of life and moderate BPD if breathing room air or a need for <30% oxygen at 36 weeks postmenstrual age or discharge from the NICU, whichever came first. Severe BPD was defined by a supplemental oxygen requirement at 28 days of life and a need for greater than or equal to 30% oxygen use and/or positive pressure support (IPPV or nCPAP) at 36 weeks postmenstrual age or discharge, whichever came first. Moderate and severe BPD have been considered together as “significant BPD”. The goal of pulse oximetry was to maintain a hemoglobin saturation of between 88% and 93%. Patients were considered to not need oxygen supplementation when it could be permanently withdrawn. The distribution of the variables was not normal based on a Kolmogorov-Smirnov test (p < 0.05 in all cases). Therefore, quantitative variables were expressed as the median and interquartile range (IQR; 25th-75th percentile). Statistical analysis of the data was performed using nonparametric techniques (Kruskal-Wallis test and Mann–Whitney U test). A chi-square analysis was used to analyze qualitative variables. Potential confounding variables were those possibly related to BPD in survivors (p between 0.05 and 0.3 in univariate analysis). Logistic regression analysis was performed with variables related to BPD in survivors (p < 0.05) and potential confounding variables. The forward stepwise method adjusted for confounding factors was used to select the variables, and the enter method using selected variables was used to obtain the odds ratios.
Results and conclusion
There was an increase in the rate of SWsBPD (1997 to 2000: 58.5%; 2001 to 2005: 74.2%; and 2006 to 2009: 75.0%; p = 0.032). In survivors, the occurrence of significant BPD decreased after 2001 (9.5% vs. 2.3%; p = 0.013). The factors associated with improved SWsBPD were delivery by caesarean section, a reduced endotracheal intubation rate and a reduced duration of mechanical ventilation.While the mortality of ELBW infants has not changed since 2001, the frequency of SWsBPD has significantly increased (75.0%) in association with increased caesarean sections and reductions in the endotracheal intubation rate, as well as the duration of mechanical ventilation.
doi:10.1186/1471-2431-12-63
PMCID: PMC3507706  PMID: 22682000
Bronchopulmonary dysplasia; Chronic lung disease; Extremely low birth weight infants; Preterm infants
11.  Post-neonatal Mortality, Morbidity, and Developmental Outcome after Ultrasound-Dated Preterm Birth in Rural Malawi: A Community-Based Cohort Study 
PLoS Medicine  2011;8(11):e1001121.
Using data collected as a follow-up to a randomized trial, Melissa Gladstone and colleagues show that during the first two years of life, infants born preterm in southern Malawi are disadvantaged in terms of mortality, growth, and development.
Background
Preterm birth is considered to be associated with an estimated 27% of neonatal deaths, the majority in resource-poor countries where rates of prematurity are high. There is no information on medium term outcomes after accurately determined preterm birth in such settings.
Methods and Findings
This community-based stratified cohort study conducted between May–December 2006 in Southern Malawi followed up 840 post-neonatal infants born to mothers who had received antenatal antibiotic prophylaxis/placebo in an attempt to reduce rates of preterm birth (APPLe trial ISRCTN84023116). Gestational age at delivery was based on ultrasound measurement of fetal bi-parietal diameter in early-mid pregnancy. 247 infants born before 37 wk gestation and 593 term infants were assessed at 12, 18, or 24 months. We assessed survival (death), morbidity (reported by carer, admissions, out-patient attendance), growth (weight and height), and development (Ten Question Questionnaire [TQQ] and Malawi Developmental Assessment Tool [MDAT]). Preterm infants were at significantly greater risk of death (hazard ratio 1.79, 95% CI 1.09–2.95). Surviving preterm infants were more likely to be underweight (weight-for-age z score; p<0.001) or wasted (weight-for-length z score; p<0.01) with no effect of gestational age at delivery. Preterm infants more often screened positively for disability on the Ten Question Questionnaire (p = 0.002). They also had higher rates of developmental delay on the MDAT at 18 months (p = 0.009), with gestational age at delivery (p = 0.01) increasing this likelihood. Morbidity—visits to a health centre (93%) and admissions to hospital (22%)—was similar for both groups.
Conclusions
During the first 2 years of life, infants who are born preterm in resource poor countries, continue to be at a disadvantage in terms of mortality, growth, and development. In addition to interventions in the immediate neonatal period, a refocus on early childhood is needed to improve outcomes for infants born preterm in low-income settings.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Being born at term in Africa is not necessarily straightforward. In Malawi, 33 of every 1,000 infants born die in the first 28 days after birth; the lifetime risk for a mother dying during or shortly after pregnancy is one in 36. The comparable figures for the United Kingdom are three infants dying per 1,000 births and a lifetime risk of maternal death of one in 4,700. But for a baby, being born preterm is even more risky and the gap between low- and high-income countries widens still further. According to a World Health Organization report in 2010, a baby born at 32 weeks of gestation (weighing around 2,000 g) in Africa has little chance of survival, while the chances of survival for a baby born at 32 weeks in North America or Europe are similar to one born at term. There are very few data on the longer term outcomes of babies born preterm in Africa and there are multiple challenges involved in gathering such information. As prenatal ultrasound is not routinely available, gestational age is often uncertain. There may be little routine follow-up of preterm babies as is commonplace in high-income countries. Data are needed from recent years that take into account both improvements in perinatal care and adverse factors such as a rising number of infants becoming HIV positive around the time of birth.
Why Was This Study Done?
We could improve outcomes for babies born preterm in sub-Saharan Africa if we understood more about what happens to them after birth. We cannot assume that the progress of these babies will be the same as those born preterm in a high-income country, as the latter group will have received different care, both before and after birth. If we can document the problems that these preterm babies face in a low-income setting, we can consider why they happen and what treatments can be realistically tested in this setting. It is also helpful to establish baseline data so that changes over time can be recorded.
The aim of this study was to document four specific outcomes up to the age of two years, on which there were few data previously from rural sub-Saharan Africa: how many babies survived, visits to a health center and admissions to the hospital, growth, and developmental delay.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers examined a group of babies that had been born to mothers who had taken part in a randomized controlled trial of an antibiotic to prevent preterm birth. The trial had previously shown that the antibiotic (azithromycin) had no effect on how many babies were born preterm or on other measures of the infants' wellbeing, and so the researchers followed up babies from both arms of the trial to look at longer term outcomes. From the original group of 2,297 women who took part in the trial, they compared 247 infants born preterm against 593 term infants randomly chosen as controls, assessed at 12, 18, or 24 months. The majority of the preterm babies who survived past a month of age (all but ten) were born after 32 weeks of gestation. Compared to the babies born at term, the infants born preterm were nearly twice as likely to die subsequently in the next two years, were more likely to be underweight (a third were moderately underweight), and to have higher rates of developmental delay. The commonest causes of death were gastroenteritis, respiratory problems, and malaria. Visits to a health center and admissions to hospital were similar in both groups.
What Do these Findings Mean?
This study documents longer term outcomes of babies born preterm in sub-Saharan Africa in detail for the first time. The strengths of the study include prenatal ultrasound dating and correct adjustment of follow-up age (which takes into account being born before term). Because the researchers defined morbidity using routine health center attendances and self-report of illnesses by parents, this outcome does not seem to have been as useful as the others in differentiating between the preterm and term babies. Better means of measuring morbidity are needed in this setting.
In the developed world, there is considerable investment being made to improve care during pregnancy and in the neonatal period. This investment in care may help by predicting which mothers are more likely to give birth early and preventing preterm birth through drug or other treatments. It is to be hoped that some of the benefit will be transferable to low-income countries. A baby born at 26 weeks' gestation and admitted to a neonatal unit in the United Kingdom has a 67% chance of survival; preterm babies born in sub-Saharan Africa face a starkly contrasting future.
Additional Information
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001121.
UNICEF presents useful statistics on mother and child outcomes
The World Health Organization has attempted to analyse preterm birth rates worldwide, including mapping the regional distribution and has also produced practical guides on strategies such as Kangaroo Mother Care, which can be used for the care of preterm infants in low resource settings
Healthy Newborn Network has good information on initiatives taking place to improve neonatal outcomes in low income settings
The March of Dimes, a nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health, provides information on research being conducted into preterm birth
Tommy's is a nonprofit organization that funds research and provides information on the risks and causes of premature birth
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001121
PMCID: PMC3210771  PMID: 22087079
12.  Need for Supplemental Oxygen at Discharge in Infants with Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia Is Not Associated with Worse Neurodevelopmental Outcomes at 3 Years Corrected Age 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(3):e90843.
Objectives
To determine if chronic oxygen dependency (discharge home on supplemental oxygen) in children with bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD; defined as requirement for supplemental O2 at 36 weeks postmenstrual age) predicts neurodevelopmental disability rates and growth outcomes at 36 months corrected age (CA).
Study Design
Longitudinal cohort study.
Setting
Southern Alberta regional center located at high altitude.
Participants
Preterm infants weighing ≤1250 grams with no BPD, BPD, and BPD with chronic oxygen dependency.
Main outcome measures
Neurodevelopmental and growth outcomes.
Results
Of 1563 preterm infants admitted from 1995–2007, 1212 survived. Complete follow-up data were available for 1030 (85%) children. Children in BPD and BPD with chronic oxygen dependency groups had significantly lower birth weights, gestational ages, prolonged mechanical ventilation and oxygen supplementation and received more postnatal steroids, compared to those without BPD. Children with BPD and BPD with chronic oxygen dependency were more likely to be below the 5th centile in weight and height compared to those without BPD but there was little difference between the BPD and BPD with chronic oxygen dependency groups. After controlling for confounding variables, children who had BPD and BPD with chronic oxygen dependency had higher odds of neurodevelopmental disability compared to those without BPD [OR (odds ratio) 1.9 (95%CI 1.1 to 3.5) and OR 1.8 (1.1 to 2.9), respectively], with no significant difference between BPD and BPD with chronic oxygen dependency [OR 0.9 (95% CI 0.6 to 1.5)].
Conclusions
BPD and BPD with chronic oxygen dependency in children predicts abnormal neurodevelopmental outcomes at 36 months CA. However, the neurodevelopmental disability rates were not significantly higher in BPD with chronic oxygen dependency children compared to children with BPD only. Compared to those without BPD, growth is impaired in children with BPD and BPD with chronic oxygen dependency, but no difference between the latter two groups.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0090843
PMCID: PMC3960119  PMID: 24646665
13.  Patent Ductus Arteriosus Therapy: Impact on Neonatal and 18-Month Outcome 
Pediatrics  2009;123(2):674-681.
OBJECTIVE
The purpose of this work was to evaluate therapy for patent ductus arteri-osus as a risk factor for death or neurodevelopmental impairment at 18 to 22 months, bronchopulmonary dysplasia, or necrotizing enterocolitis in extremely low birth weight infants.
METHODS
We studied infants in the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network Generic Data Base born between 2000 and 2004 at 23 to 28 weeks’ gestation and at <1000-g birth weight with patent ductus arteriosus. Patent ductus arteriosus therapy was evaluated as a risk factor for outcomes in bivariable and multivariable analyses.
RESULTS
Treatment for subjects with patent ductus arteriosus (n = 2838) included 403 receiving supportive treatment only, 1525 treated with indomethacin only, 775 with indomethacin followed by secondary surgical closure, and 135 treated with primary surgery. Patients who received supportive therapy for patent ductus arteriosus did not differ from subjects treated with indomethacin only for any of the outcomes of interest. Compared with indomethacin treatment only, patients undergoing primary or secondary surgery were smaller and more premature. When compared with indomethacin alone, primary surgery was associated with increased adjusted odds for neurodevelopmental impairment and bronchopulmonary dysplasia in multivariable logistic regression. Secondary surgical closure was associated with increased odds for neurodevelopmental impairment and increased adjusted odds for bronchopulmonary dysplasia but decreased adjusted odds for death. Risk of necrotizing enterocolitis did not differ among treatments. Indomethacin prophylaxis did not significantly modify these results.
CONCLUSIONS
Our results suggest that infants treated with primary or secondary surgery for patent ductus arteriosus may be at increased risk for poor short- and long-term outcomes compared with those treated with indomethacin. Prophylaxis with indomethacin in the first 24 hours of life did not modify the subsequent outcomes of patent ductus arteriosus therapy.
doi:10.1542/peds.2007-2781
PMCID: PMC2752886  PMID: 19171637
patent ductus arteriosus; bronchopulmonary dysplasia; necrotizing enterocolitis; neurodevelopmental impairment; therapy ductus arteriosus
14.  Approach to Infants Born at 22 to 24 Weeks’ Gestation: Relationship to Outcomes of More-Mature Infants 
Pediatrics  2012;129(6):e1508-e1516.
OBJECTIVE:
We sought to determine if a center’s approach to care of premature infants at the youngest gestational ages (22–24 weeks’ gestation) is associated with clinical outcomes among infants of older gestational ages (25–27 weeks’ gestation).
METHODS:
Inborn infants of 401 to 1000 g birth weight and 22 0/7 to 27 6/7 weeks’ gestation at birth from 2002 to 2008 were enrolled into a prospectively collected database at 20 centers participating in the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network. Markers of an aggressive approach to care for 22- to 24-week infants included use of antenatal corticosteroids, cesarean delivery, and resuscitation. The primary outcome was death before postnatal day 120 for infants of 25 to 27 weeks’ gestation. Secondary outcomes were the combined outcomes of death or a number of morbidities associated with prematurity.
RESULTS:
Our study included 3631 infants 22 to 24 weeks’ gestation and 5227 infants 25 to 27 weeks’ gestation. Among the 22- to 24-week infants, use of antenatal corticosteroids ranged from 28% to 100%, cesarean delivery from 13% to 65%, and resuscitation from 30% to 100% by center. Centers with higher rates of antenatal corticosteroid use in 22- to 24-week infants had reduced rates of death, death or retinopathy of prematurity, death or late-onset sepsis, death or necrotizing enterocolitis, and death or neurodevelopmental impairment in 25- to 27-week infants.
CONCLUSIONS:
This study suggests that physicians’ willingness to provide care to extremely low gestation infants as measured by frequency of use of antenatal corticosteroids is associated with improved outcomes for more-mature infants.
doi:10.1542/peds.2011-2216
PMCID: PMC3362905  PMID: 22641761
low-birth weight infant; NICUs; treatment; patient outcome assessment
15.  Initial respiratory management in preterm infants and bronchopulmonary dysplasia 
Clinics  2011;66(5):823-827.
BACKGROUND:
Ventilator injury has been implicated in the pathogenesis of bronchopulmonary dysplasia. Avoiding invasive ventilation could reduce lung injury, and early respiratory management may affect pulmonary outcomes.
OBJECTIVE:
To analyze the effect of initial respiratory support on survival without bronchopulmonary dysplasia at a gestational age of 36 weeks.
DESIGN/METHODS:
A prospective 3-year observational study. Preterm infants of <32 weeks gestational age were classified into 4 groups according to the support needed during the first 2 hours of life: room air, nasal continuous positive airway pressure, intubation/surfactant/extubation and prolonged mechanical ventilation (defined as needing mechanical ventilation for more than 2 hours).
RESULTS:
Of the 329 eligible patients, a total of 49% did not need intubation, and 68.4% did not require prolonged mechanical ventilation. At a gestational age of 26 weeks, there was a significant correlation between survival without bronchopulmonary dysplasia and initial respiratory support. Preterm infants requiring mechanical ventilation showed a higher risk of death and bronchopulmonary dysplasia. After controlling for gestational age, antenatal corticosteroid use, maternal preeclampsia and chorioamnionitis, the survival rate without bronchopulmonary dysplasia remained significantly lower in the mechanically ventilated group.
CONCLUSIONS:
In our population, the need for more than 2 hours of mechanical ventilation predicted the development of bronchopulmonary dysplasia in preterm infants with a gestational age >26 weeks (sensitivity = 89.5% and specificity = 67%). The need for prolonged mechanical ventilation could be an early marker for the development of bronchopulmonary dysplasia. This finding could help identify a target population with a high risk of chronic lung disease. Future research is needed to determine other strategies to prevent bronchopulmonary dysplasia in this high-risk group of patients.
doi:10.1590/S1807-59322011000500019
PMCID: PMC3109382  PMID: 21789387
Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia; Preterm; Nasal CPAP; Surfactant; Initial; Respiratory Support
16.  Identification of Extremely Premature Infants at High Risk of Rehospitalization 
Pediatrics  2011;128(5):e1216-e1225.
OBJECTIVE:
Extremely low birth weight infants often require rehospitalization during infancy. Our objective was to identify at the time of discharge which extremely low birth weight infants are at higher risk for rehospitalization.
METHODS:
Data from extremely low birth weight infants in Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network centers from 2002–2005 were analyzed. The primary outcome was rehospitalization by the 18- to 22-month follow-up, and secondary outcome was rehospitalization for respiratory causes in the first year. Using variables and odds ratios identified by stepwise logistic regression, scoring systems were developed with scores proportional to odds ratios. Classification and regression-tree analysis was performed by recursive partitioning and automatic selection of optimal cutoff points of variables.
RESULTS:
A total of 3787 infants were evaluated (mean ± SD birth weight: 787 ± 136 g; gestational age: 26 ± 2 weeks; 48% male, 42% black). Forty-five percent of the infants were rehospitalized by 18 to 22 months; 14.7% were rehospitalized for respiratory causes in the first year. Both regression models (area under the curve: 0.63) and classification and regression-tree models (mean misclassification rate: 40%–42%) were moderately accurate. Predictors for the primary outcome by regression were shunt surgery for hydrocephalus, hospital stay of >120 days for pulmonary reasons, necrotizing enterocolitis stage II or higher or spontaneous gastrointestinal perforation, higher fraction of inspired oxygen at 36 weeks, and male gender. By classification and regression-tree analysis, infants with hospital stays of >120 days for pulmonary reasons had a 66% rehospitalization rate compared with 42% without such a stay.
CONCLUSIONS:
The scoring systems and classification and regression-tree analysis models identified infants at higher risk of rehospitalization and might assist planning for care after discharge.
doi:10.1542/peds.2011-1142
PMCID: PMC3208965  PMID: 22007016
logistic models; infant; premature; predictive value of tests
17.  Respiratory outcomes and atopy in school-age children who were preterm at birth, with and without bronchopulmonary dysplasia 
Clinics  2011;66(3):425-430.
OBJECTIVE:
To assess pulmonary function and the prevalence of atopy in school-age children who were very low birth weight as infants and to compare those who had bronchopulmonary dysplasia to those who did not.
METHOD:
We studied 85 (39 male and 46 female) at a mean age of 84 (range, 62 to 107) months who were very low birth weight infants. Bronchopulmonary dysplasia was defined as oxygen dependency at 36 weeks gestational age. We excluded 8 patients (4 for cerebral palsy and 4 for no collaboration). Detailed perinatal and clinical data were collected. Lung function was evaluated using conventional spirometry. Atopy (assessed by the allergy skin-prick test) was considered when at least one positive skin test occurred in a panel of the most common environmental allergens in the local region. Comparisons between the bronchopulmonary dysplasia and no bronchopulmonary dysplasia groups were performed using the Mann-Whitney, χ2 and Fisher's exact tests.
RESULTS:
We compared the bronchopulmonary dysplasia (n = 13) and no bronchopulmonary dysplasia (n = 64) groups. Atopy was observed in 4 (30.8%) of the bronchopulmonary dysplasia patients and in 17 (26.6%) of the no bronchopulmonary dysplasia patients (p = 0.742). Two (15.4%) patients with bronchopulmonary dysplasia had a family history of atopy vs. 17 (26.6%) in the no bronchopulmonary dysplasia group (p = 0.5). Lung function tests showed airway obstruction in 2 (15.4%) of the bronchopulmonary dysplasia patients and in 10 (15.6%) of the no bronchopulmonary dysplasia patients (p = 1.0). Four (33.3%) of the bronchopulmonary dysplasia patients had small airway obstruction vs. 14 (22.2%) of the no bronchopulmonary dysplasia patients (p = 0.466).
CONCLUSION:
Our data showed no significant differences in lung function between bronchopulmonary dysplasia and no bronchopulmonary dysplasia patients at school age and no evidence of an association between atopy and bronchopulmonary dysplasia.
doi:10.1590/S1807-59322011000300011
PMCID: PMC3072003  PMID: 21552667
18.  Early working memory as a racially and ethnically neutral measure of outcome in extremely preterm children at 18-22 months 
Early human development  2013;89(12):10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2013.08.009.
Background
Difficulties with executive function has been found in preterm children, resulting in difficulties with learning and school performance.
Aim
This study evaluated the relationship of early working memory as measured by object permanence items to the cognitive and language scores on the Bayley Scales-III in a cohort of children born extremely preterm.
Study Design
Logistic regression models were conducted to compare object permanence scores derived from the Bayley Scales-III by race/ethnicity and maternal education, controlling for medical covariates.
Subjects
Extremely preterm toddlers (526), who were part of a Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network's multi-center study, were evaluated at 18-22 months corrected age.
Outcome Measures
Object permanence scores derived from the Bayley Developmental Scales were compared by race/ethnicity and maternal education, controlling for medical covariates.
Results
There were no significant differences in object permanence mastery and scores among the treatment groups after controlling for medical and social variables, including maternal education and race/ethnicity. Males and children with intraventricular hemorrhage, retinopathy of prematurity, and bronchopulmonary dysplasia were less likely to demonstrate object permanence mastery and had lower object permanence scores. Children who attained object permanence mastery had significantly higher Bayley Scales-III cognitive and language scores after controlling for medical and socio-economic factors.
Conclusions
Our measure of object permanence is free of influence from race, ethnic and socio-economic factors. Adding this simple task to current clinical practice could help detect early executive function difficulties in young children.
doi:10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2013.08.009
PMCID: PMC3830714  PMID: 23993309
Working memory; prematurity; development
19.  Pulmonary Hypertension in Preterm Infants With Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia 
Korean Circulation Journal  2010;40(3):131-136.
Background and Objectives
With the increasing survival of preterm infants, pulmonary hypertension (PH) related to bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) has become an important complication. The aim of this study was to investigate the characteristics and outcome of PH in preterm infants with BPD and to identify the risk factors for PH.
Subjects and Methods
We reviewed the records of 116 preterm infants with BPD cared for at a single tertiary center between 2004 and 2008.
Results
Twenty-nine (25%) infants had PH >2 months after birth. PH occurred initially at a median age of 65 days (range, 7-232 days). Severe BPD, a birth weight <800 g, long-term ventilator care and oxygen supplementation, a high ventilator setting, infection, and a patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) were related to PH based on univariate analysis (p<0.05). The infants who had longer oxygen supplementation were significantly more likely to have PH (odds ratio, 18.5; 95% confidence interval, 4.1-84.6; p<0.001). PH was improved in 76% of infants after a median of 85 days (range, 20-765 days). Four infants (14%) died. The death of 3 infants was attributed to PH.
Conclusion
BPD was frequently complicated by PH. Although PH resolved in the majority of infants, PH in preterm infants with BPD can be fatal. Regular screening for PH and adequate management are required.
doi:10.4070/kcj.2010.40.3.131
PMCID: PMC2844979  PMID: 20339498
Hypertension, pulmonary; Infant, premature; Bronchopulmonary dysplasia
20.  Incidence of Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia in Korea 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2012;27(8):914-921.
A nationwide survey was conducted to determine the incidence of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) in Korea and the intercenter differences in survival and BPD rates among preterm infants. Questionnaires were sent to all registered neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). The questionnaires inquired about the survival and BPD rates of very low birth weight (VLBW, < 1,500 g) infants who had been admitted to each NICU from 2007 to 2008. BPD was defined as requiring oxygen at 36 weeks' postmenstrual age. Almost all level III NICUs replied. During the study period, 3,841 VLBW infants were born in the NICUs that responded to the survey. The survival rate was 81% and the BPD rate was 18%. Combined outcome of BPD or death rate was 37%. The BPD rate and combined outcome of BPD or death rate varied considerably from 5% to 50% and 11% to 73%, respectively across the centers. There was no significant correlation between the survival rate and the BPD rate across the centers. In conclusion, the incidence of BPD among VLBW infants in Korea during the study period was 18%, and a considerable intercenter difference in BPD rates was noted.
doi:10.3346/jkms.2012.27.8.914
PMCID: PMC3410240  PMID: 22876059
Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia; Epidemiology; Infant, Very Low Birth Weight
21.  Methicillin-Resistant and Susceptible Staphylococcus aureus Bacteremia and Meningitis in Preterm Infants 
Pediatrics  2012;129(4):e914-e922.
BACKGROUND:
Data are limited on the impact of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) on morbidity and mortality among very low birth weight (VLBW) infants with S aureus (SA) bacteremia and/or meningitis (B/M).
METHODS:
Neonatal data for VLBW infants (birth weight 401–1500 g) born January 1, 2006, to December 31, 2008, who received care at centers of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network were collected prospectively. Early-onset (≤72 hours after birth) and late-onset (>72 hours) infections were defined by blood or cerebrospinal fluid cultures and antibiotic treatment of ≥5 days (or death <5 days with intent to treat). Outcomes were compared for infants with MRSA versus methicillin-susceptible S aureus (MSSA) B/M.
RESULTS:
Of 8444 infants who survived >3 days, 316 (3.7%) had SA B/M. Eighty-eight had MRSA (1% of all infants, 28% of infants with SA); 228 had MSSA (2.7% of all infants, 72% of infants with SA). No infant had both MRSA and MSSA B/M. Ninety-nine percent of MRSA infections were late-onset. The percent of infants with MRSA varied by center (P < .001) with 9 of 20 centers reporting no cases. Need for mechanical ventilation, diagnosis of respiratory distress syndrome, necrotizing enterocolitis, and other morbidities did not differ between infants with MRSA and MSSA. Mortality was high with both MRSA (23 of 88, 26%) and MSSA (55 of 228, 24%).
CONCLUSIONS:
Few VLBW infants had SA B/M. The 1% with MRSA had morbidity and mortality rates similar to infants with MSSA. Practices should provide equal focus on prevention and management of both MRSA and MSSA infections among VLBW infants.
doi:10.1542/peds.2011-0966
PMCID: PMC3313632  PMID: 22412036
Staphylococcus aureus; methicillin resistant; infant; newborn
22.  Vitamin A Supplementation in Extremely Low- Birth-Weight Infants: Subgroup Analysis in Small-for-Gestational-Age Infants 
American journal of perinatology  2013;30(9):771-780.
Objective
Preterm infants with intrauterine growth restriction are at increased risk of respiratory distress syndrome and bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD). A randomized clinical trial by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) Neonatal Research Network demonstrated that vitamin A supplementation in extremely low-birth-weight (ELBW) preterm infants requiring early respiratory support decreased the risk of developing BPD.
Study Design
A subgroup analysis of small-for-gestational-age (SGA) infants from the original NICHD trial was performed to test the hypothesis that in infants requiring early respiratory support, vitamin A supplementation decreases the relative risk of BPD or death in premature SGA infants to a greater extent than in gestational age–equivalent vitamin A–treated appropriate-for-gestational-age (AGA) infants.
Results
Although vitamin A supplementation significantly increased serum retinol concentrations in AGA ELBW infants (median [5th percentile, 95th percentile]: 16.3 [−7.0, 68.8] versus 2.4 [−13.9, 55.1]; p < 0.001), no increases were noted in SGA ELBW infants.
Conclusions
Given the limited power of this analysis due to a low number of SGA infants, these data did not provide evidence to support the hypothesis that vitamin A supplementation in preterm SGA infants requiring early respiratory support decreases the relative risk of BPD or death as compared with preterm AGA infants.
doi:10.1055/s-0032-1333410
PMCID: PMC3923571  PMID: 23329565
vitamin A; IUGR–intrauterine growth restriction; BPD–bronchopulmonary dysplasia; SGA–small for gestational age; AGA–appropriate for gestational age
23.  Community Supports After Surviving Extremely Low-Birth-Weight, Extremely Preterm Birth 
Objective
To determine special outpatient services (SOS) use, need, associated factors, and neurodevelopmental and functional outcomes among extremely preterm infants at 18 to 22 months’ corrected age.
Design
Retrospective analysis.
Setting
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) Neonatal Research Network.
Participants
Infants younger than 28 weeks’ gestational age who had been born weighing less than 1000 g at an NICHD Neonatal Research Network center from January 1, 1997, to December 31, 2000, and who were receiving follow-up at 18 to 22 months’ corrected age.
Interventions
Questionnaires were administered at the 18- to 22-month follow-up visit regarding SOS use since hospital discharge and the current need for SOS (social work, visiting nurse, medical specialty, early intervention, speech and language services, occupational therapy and physical therapy, and neurodevelopmental and behavioral services).
Main Outcome Measures
The use of and need for SOS were analyzed by gestational age. Logistic regression analysis identified factors independently associated with the use of more than 5 services and with the need for any services.
Results
Of 2315 infants, 54.7% used more than 3 SOS by 18 to 22 months, and 19.1% used 6 to 7 SOS. The need for any SOS was reported by approximately 37%. The following variables that were commonly associated with adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes were also associated with the use of more than 5 SOS: sepsis, birth weight, postnatal corticosteroid use, bronchopulmonary dysplasia, and cystic periventricular leukomalacia or grade 3 or 4 intraventricular hemorrhage. Male sex was associated with the need for any SOS. Although high SOS use was more likely among children with adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes, a reported need for SOS was common even among those with mild developmental impairment (39.7%) and mild cerebral palsy (42.2%).
Conclusions
High SOS use is common, has identifiable neonatal risk factors, and is associated with neurodevelopmental impairment. Extremely preterm survivors have substantial need for community supports regardless of their impairment level. Efforts to improve comprehensive delivery of family-centered community-based services are urgently needed.
doi:10.1001/archpedi.162.8.748
PMCID: PMC2748992  PMID: 18678807
24.  Timing of Elective Repeat Cesarean Delivery at Term and Neonatal Outcomes 
The New England journal of medicine  2009;360(2):111-120.
BACKGROUND
Because of increased rates of respiratory complications, elective cesarean delivery is discouraged before 39 weeks of gestation unless there is evidence of fetal lung maturity. We assessed associations between elective cesarean delivery at term (37 weeks of gestation or longer) but before 39 weeks of gestation and neonatal outcomes.
METHODS
We studied a cohort of consecutive patients undergoing repeat cesarean sections performed at 19 centers of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Maternal–Fetal Medicine Units Network from 1999 through 2002. Women with viable singleton pregnancies delivered electively (i.e., before the onset of labor and without any recognized indications for delivery before 39 weeks of gestation) were included. The primary outcome was the composite of neonatal death and any of several adverse events, including respiratory complications, treated hypoglycemia, newborn sepsis, and admission to the neonatal intensive care unit (ICU).
RESULTS
Of 24,077 repeat cesarean deliveries at term, 13,258 were performed electively; of these, 35.8% were performed before 39 completed weeks of gestation (6.3% at 37 weeks and 29.5% at 38 weeks) and 49.1% at 39 weeks of gestation. One neonatal death occurred. As compared with births at 39 weeks, births at 37 weeks and at 38 weeks were associated with an increased risk of the primary outcome (adjusted odds ratio for births at 37 weeks, 2.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.7 to 2.5; adjusted odds ratio for births at 38 weeks, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.3 to 1.7; P for trend <0.001). The rates of adverse respiratory outcomes, mechanical ventilation, newborn sepsis, hypoglycemia, admission to the neonatal ICU, and hospitalization for 5 days or more were increased by a factor of 1.8 to 4.2 for births at 37 weeks and 1.3 to 2.1 for births at 38 weeks.
CONCLUSIONS
Elective repeat cesarean delivery before 39 weeks of gestation is common and is associated with respiratory and other adverse neonatal outcomes.
doi:10.1056/NEJMoa0803267
PMCID: PMC2811696  PMID: 19129525
25.  Less postnatal steroids, more bronchopulmonary dysplasia: a population‐based study in very low birthweight infants 
Objective
To study the association between reduced use of postnatal steroids for bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) in very low birthweight (VLBW) infants and oxygen (O2)‐dependency at 28 days of age and at 36 weeks postmenstrual age.
Design
Large national database study.
Setting
The Israel National VLBW Neonatal Database.
Patients
The sample included infants born between 1997 and 2004, of gestational age 24–32 weeks, who required mechanical ventilation or O2 therapy. Four time periods were compared: 1997–8 (era 1, peak use), 1999–2000 (era 2, intermediate), 2001–2 (era 3, expected reduction) and 2003–4 (era 4, lowest). The outcome variable “oxygen dependency” was based on clinical criteria. Multivariate regression models were used to account for confounding variables.
Results
Steroid use fell significantly from 23.5% in 1997–8 to 11% in 2003–4 (p<0.005). After adjustment for relevant confounding variables, the odds ratio for O2 therapy at 28 days in era 4 versus era 1 was 1.75, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.47 to 2.09 and 1.41, 95% CI 1.15 to 1.73 at 36 weeks postmenstrual age. The mean duration of O2 therapy increased from 25.3 days (95% CI 23.3 to 26.3) in era 1, to 28.0 days (95% CI 26.6 to 29.4) in era 4. Survival increased from 78.5% in era 1 to 81.6% in era 4 (p<0.005).
Conclusions
The use of steroids has fallen considerably since the awareness of the adverse effects of this treatment. This change has been temporally associated with increased O2 dependency at 28 days of age and at 36 weeks postmenstrual age. The prolongation of O2 therapy was modest in degree.
doi:10.1136/adc.2006.094474
PMCID: PMC2675295  PMID: 16769711

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