Pulmonary disorders and respiratory failure represent one of the most common morbidities of preterm newborns admitted to neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). The use of nasal high-flow therapy (nHFT) has been more recently introduced into the NICUs as a non-invasive respiratory (NIV) support.
We performed a retrospective study to evaluate safety and effectiveness of nHFT as primary support for infants born < 29 weeks of gestation and/or VLBW presenting with mild Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS).
The main outcome was the percentage of patients that did not need mechanical ventilation. Secondary outcomes were rate of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BDP), air leaks, nasal injury, late onset sepsis (LOS), intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH), retinopathy (ROP), necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), hemodynamically-significant patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) and death.
Sixty-four preterm newborns were enrolled. Overall, 93% of enrolled patients did not need mechanical ventilation. In a subgroup analysis, 88.5% of infants < 29 weeks and 86.7% of infants ELBW (< 1000 g BW) did not need mechanical ventilation.
BPD was diagnosed in 26.6% of preterms enrolled (Mild 20%, Moderate 4.5%, Severe 1.5%). In subgroup analysis, BPD was diagnosed in 53.9% of newborns with GA < 29 weeks, in 53.3% of ELBW newborns and in 11.1% of small for gestational age (SGA) newborns.
Neither air leaks nor nasal injury were recorded as well as no exitus occurred. LOS, IVH, ROP, NEC and PDA occurred respectively in 16.1%, 0%, 7.8%, and 1.6% of newborns.
According to our results, n-HFT seems to be effective as first respiratory support in preterm newborns with mild RDS. Further studies in a larger number of preterm newborns are required to confirm nHFT effectiveness in the acute phase of RDS.
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- Nasal high flow therapy in very low birth weight infants with mild respiratory distress syndrome: a single center experience
Antonio Di Mauro
Francesco Paolo Bianchi
- BioMed Central
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