A pinboard by
Kokou Amegan-Aho

I am a Lecturer and a Pediatric Fellow


Improving newborn survival through the establishment of neonatal intensive care units

Neonatal survival continues to be a pressing concern in sub-Saharan Africa, especially Ghana. Three out of 4 global neonatal deaths occur in Africa and Asia. Latest estimates are 1,027,000 neonatal deaths in sub-Sahara Africa in 2015, which constitutes about 40 % of childhood deaths. The neonatal mortality rate was 24 per 1,000 births in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2015 as compared to 3 in developed countries. In Ghana, newborn deaths have remained unchanged between 1990 and 2015. Ghana’s Volta Region is home to 10% of the country’s births and has high neonatal mortality rates, yet historically has had no specialized neonatal services. Much of the focus of efforts to improve neonatal health has appropriately been in community settings. However, there is also increasing focus on facility-based care. Indeed, facility-based care for neonates in Africa helped improves survival of babies, especially those with low birth weight. Prematurity is one of the top 3 killers of babies in this low resourced setting. Others are infections and birth asphyxia. Intensive care unit services are therefore needed to optimally care for these babies, especially in terms of respiratory support and adequate feeding. We recently open a neonatal intensive care unit at the Ghana's Volta region. Follow this pinboard to learn about the advances made in improving newborn survival in the Volta Region of Ghana.


Iranian parent-staff communication and parental stress in the neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Abstract: The birth of an infant requiring hospitalization in the neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) uniformly is reported to be stressful for parents and family members. This study aimed to determine parent-staff communication in the NICU and its relationship to parent stress.Two hundred and three Iranian parents with preterm infants hospitalized in the NICU participated in this descriptive-correlational study. The participants were selected by the quota sampling method. Data collected included a three-part: questionnaire, the first part covered demographic parent and infant information, the second was the Parent-Staff Communication Scale (the score of which ranged from 0 to 180), and the third was the Parental Stress Scale (the score of which ranged from 0 to 102). Descriptive and inferential statistics including the Pearson's correlation coefficient test were applied to the data, using SPSS software Version 16.This study revealed that fathers and mothers' stress and communication scores were almost comparable and both higher than expected. The total mean score of the two main variables, i.e., parent-staff communication and parental stress were, respectively, 100.72 ± 18.89 and 75.26 ± 17.6. A significant inverse correlation was found between parental stress and parent-staff communication scores (r = -0.144, P = 0.041).Based on this study finding showed that better parent-staff communication is related to lower parent stress scores, it is recommended that nurses and physicians receive specific skill training for the establishment of effective parent-staff communication. It is anticipated that such improved staff skills will help decrease parent stress and therewith likely promote parent and infant health in the NICU.

Pub.: 16 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

A targeted noise reduction observational study for reducing noise in a neonatal intensive unit.

Abstract: Excessive noise in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) can interfere with infants' growth, development and healing.Local problem:Sound levels in our NICUs exceeded the recommended levels by the World Health Organization.We implemented a noise reduction strategy in an urban, tertiary academic medical center NICU that included baseline noise measurements. We conducted a survey involving staff and visitors regarding their opinions and perceptions of noise levels in the NICU. Ongoing feedback to staff after each measurement cycle was provided to improve awareness, engagement and adherence with noise reduction strategies. After widespread discussion with active clinician involvement, consensus building and iterative testing, changes were implemented including: lowering of equipment alarm sounds, designated 'quiet times' and implementing a customized education program for staff.A multiphase noise reduction quality improvement (QI) intervention to reduce ambient sound levels in a patient care room in our NICUs by 3 dB (20%) over 18 months.The noise in the NICU was reduced by 3 dB from baseline. Mean (s.d.) baseline, phase 2, 3 and 4 noise levels in the two NICUs were: LAeq: 57.0 (0.84), 56.8 (1.6), 55.3 (1.9) and 54.5 (2.6) dB, respectively (P<0.01). Adherence with the planned process measure of 'quiet times' was >90%.Implementing a multipronged QI initiative resulted in significant noise level reduction in two multipod NICUs. It is feasible to reduce noise levels if QI interventions are coupled with active engagement of the clinical staff and following continuous process of improvement methods, measurements and protocols.Journal of Perinatology advance online publication, 15 June 2017; doi:10.1038/jp.2017.93.

Pub.: 16 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Retrospective cohort study of all deaths among infants born between 22 and 27 completed weeks of gestation in Switzerland over a 3-year period.

Abstract: The aim of this research is to assess causes and circumstances of deaths in extremely low gestational age neonates (ELGANs) born in Switzerland over a 3-year period.Population-based, retrospective cohort study.All nine level III perinatal centres (neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) and affiliated obstetrical services) in Switzerland.ELGANs with a gestational age (GA) <28 weeks who died between 1 July 2012 and 30 June 2015.A total of 594 deaths were recorded with 280 (47%) stillbirths and 314 (53%) deaths after live birth. Of the latter, 185 (59%) occurred in the delivery room and 129 (41%) following admission to an NICU. Most liveborn infants dying in the delivery room had a GA ≤24 weeks and died following primary non-intervention. In contrast, NICU deaths occurred following unrestricted life support regardless of GA. End-of-life decision-making and redirection of care were based on medical futility and anticipated poor quality of life in 69% and 28% of patients, respectively. Most infants were extubated before death (87%).In Switzerland, most deaths among infants born at less than 24 weeks of gestation occurred in the delivery room. In contrast, most deaths of ELGANs with a GA ≥24 weeks were observed following unrestricted provisional intensive care, end-of-life decision-making and redirection of care in the NICU regardless of the degree of immaturity.

Pub.: 18 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Layout and Nurses' Work.

Abstract: Neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) remain one of the few areas in hospitals that still use an open bay (OPBY) design for patient stays greater than 24 hr, housing multiple infants, staff, and families in one large room. This creates high noise levels, contributes to the spread of infection, and affords families little privacy. These problems have given rise to the single-family room NICU. This represents a significant change in the care environment for nurses. This literature review answers the question: When compared to OPBY layout, how does a single family room layout impact neonatal nurses' work? Thirteen studies published between 2006 and 2015 were located. Many studies reported both positive and negative effects on nurses' work and were therefore sorted by their cited advantages and disadvantages. Advantages included improved quality of the physical environment; improved quality of patient care; improved parent interaction; and improvements in nurse job satisfaction, stress, and burnout. Disadvantages included decreased interaction among the NICU patient care team, increased nurse workload, decreased visibility on the unit, and difficult interactions with family. This review suggests that single-family room NICUs introduce a complex situation in which trade-offs occur for nurses, most prominently the trade-off between visibility and privacy. Additionally, the literature is clear on what elements of nurses' work are impacted, but how the built environment influences these elements, and how these elements interact during nurses' work, is not as well understood. The current level of research and directions for future research are also discussed.

Pub.: 20 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Temperament and behavior in toddlers born preterm with related clinical problems.

Abstract: The aim of this study was to compare temperament and behavior profiles among groups of preterm toddlers differentiated by level of prematurity and the presence of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) or retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), controlling for neonatal clinical conditions and chronological age.The sample comprised 100 preterm toddlers segregated according to level of prematurity (75 very preterm and 25 moderate/late preterm) and presence of BPD (n=36) and ROP (n=63). Temperament was assessed by the Early Childhood Behavior Questionnaire and behavior by the Child Behavior Checklist. The MANOVA was performed with a post-hoc univariate test.The level of prematurity and the presence of BPD and ROP did not affect temperament and behavioral problems in toddlers born preterm. However, the covariates age and length of stay in NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) affected temperament and behavioral problems, respectively. The older toddlers showed higher inhibitory control and lower activity levels than younger toddlers (range of 18-36months-old). Additionally, toddlers who stayed in the NICU longer showed more pervasive development and emotionally reactive problems than toddlers who stayed in NICU for less time.The level of prematurity and the presence of bronchopulmonary dysplasia and retinopathy of prematurity did not affect temperament and behavioral problems in toddlers born preterm. However, a longer stay in the NICU increased the risk for behavioral problems, and age enhanced the regulation of temperament at toddlerhood.

Pub.: 20 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Evolution of care indicators after an early discharge intervention in preterm infants.

Abstract: To evaluate the evolution of health outcomes in preterm infants included in an early discharge programme.Controlled, non-randomised trial with an intervention group and a control group children admitted to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of the University Hospital Virgen de las Nieves of Granada were included in the study. The intervention group comprised preterm infants admitted to the neonatal unit clinically stable, whose family home was located within 20km. from the hospital. They were discharged two weeks before the established time and a skilled nurse in neonatal care monitored them at home. The control group comprised infants who could not be included in home monitoring due to the distance to the hospital criterion or because their families did not give their consent and who received the usual care until their discharge. The study variables were the outcome indicators of the Nursing Outcomes Classification.Differences were found in the Nursing Outcomes Classification scores in the intervention group compared to the control group.The early discharge of preterm infants followed up at home by an expert nurse in neonatal care is a health service that achieves results in preparating parents for the care of their child, enabling them to learn about the health services, adapt to their new life, and establishbreastfeeding times. It constitutes safe intervention for children and is beneficial to parents.

Pub.: 20 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Emerging antimicrobial resistance in early and late-onset neonatal sepsis.

Abstract: Compared to developed countries, the use of antimicrobials in Egypt is less regulated and is available over the counter without the need for prescriptions. The impact of such policy on antimicrobial resistance has not been studied. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of early and late onset sepsis, and the frequency of antimicrobial resistance in a major referral neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).The study included all neonates admitted to the NICU over a 12-month period. Prospectively collected clinical and laboratory data were retrieved, including blood cultures and endotracheal aspirate cultures if performed.A total of 953 neonates were admitted, of them 314 neonates were diagnosed with sepsis; 123 with early onset sepsis (EOS) and 191 with late onset sepsis (LOS). A total of 388 blood cultures were obtained, with 166 positive results. Total endotracheal aspirate samples were 127; of them 79 were culture-positive. The most frequently isolated organisms in blood were Klebsiella pneumoniae (42%) and Coagulase negative staphylococcus (19%) whereas in endotracheal cultures were Klebsiella pneumoniae (41%) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (19%). Gram negative organisms were most resistant to ampicillins (100%), cephalosporins (93%-100%) and piperacillin-tazobactam (99%) with less resistance to aminoglycosides (36%-52%). Gram positive isolates were least resistant to vancomycin (18%). Multidrug resistance was detected in 92 (38%) cultures, mainly among gram negative isolates (78/92).Antibiotic resistance constitutes a challenge to the management of neonatal sepsis in Egypt. Resistance was predominant in both early and late onset sepsis. This study supports the need to implement policies that prohibits the non-prescription community use of antibiotics.

Pub.: 21 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

The Use of Gabapentin for Pain and Agitation in Neonates and Infants in a Neonatal ICU.

Abstract: Limited data support how to safely and effectively treat refractory pain and agitation in neonates and infants. Gabapentin has been used in this patient population and has shown promising results, yet there is still a paucity of data about its clinical efficacy. There is a need for a larger evaluation to determine its effectiveness. This study describes one institution's experience with gabapentin for the treatment of refractory pain and agitation in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).This was a retrospective, observational evaluation of patients who received gabapentin in the level IV NICU at the Cleveland Clinic Children's Hospital. Changes in neonatal pain, agitation, and sedation scale (N-PASS) scores and analgesic and sedative medication requirements were analyzed, as were gabapentin dose requirements and adverse reactions.Between January 2012 and November 2015, 22 patients received gabapentin and were included in this study. The average gabapentin starting dose was 10.2 mg/kg/day, with maximum doses up to 25.5 mg/kg/day. The median N-PASS score at gabapentin therapy initiation was 3.1 and after gabapentin initiation the last N-PASS score documented was 0 in all but 5 patients. Gabapentin use reduced the need for analgesic or sedative medications. The drug was well tolerated, and only 1 patient experienced an adverse reaction to gabapentin (i.e., nystagmus).Gabapentin was well tolerated and associated with decreases in pain scores. It's use resulted in decreased requirements for analgesic and sedative medications. Gabapentin therapy appears to be an effective option for neonates and infants with refractory pain and agitation.

Pub.: 24 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

A multicentre, randomised controlled, non-inferiority trial, comparing nasal high flow with nasal continuous positive airway pressure as primary support for newborn infants with early respiratory distress born in Australian non-tertiary special care nurseries (the HUNTER trial): study protocol.

Abstract: Nasal high-flow (nHF) therapy is a popular mode of respiratory support for newborn infants. Evidence for nHF use is predominantly from neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). There are no randomised trials of nHF use in non-tertiary special care nurseries (SCNs). We hypothesise that nHF is non-inferior to nasal continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) as primary support for newborn infants with respiratory distress, in the population cared for in non-tertiary SCNs.The HUNTER trial is an unblinded Australian multicentre, randomised, non-inferiority trial. Infants are eligible if born at a gestational age ≥31 weeks with birth weight ≥1200 g and admitted to a participating non-tertiary SCN, are <24 hours old at randomisation and require non-invasive respiratory support or supplemental oxygen for >1 hour. Infants are randomised to treatment with either nHF or CPAP. The primary outcome is treatment failure within 72 hours of randomisation, as determined by objective oxygenation, apnoea or blood gas criteria or by a clinical decision that urgent intubation and mechanical ventilation, or transfer to a tertiary NICU, is required. Secondary outcomes include incidence of pneumothorax requiring drainage, duration of respiratory support, supplemental oxygen and hospitalisation, costs associated with hospital care, cost-effectiveness, parental stress and satisfaction and nursing workload.Multisite ethical approval for the study has been granted by The Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia (Trial Reference No. 34222), and by each participating site. The trial is currently recruiting in eight centres in Victoria and New South Wales, Australia, with one previous site no longer recruiting. The trial results will be published in a peer-reviewed journal and will be presented at national and international conferences.Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ANZCTR): ACTRN12614001203640; pre-results.

Pub.: 25 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Adverse pregnancy outcomes in deliveries prior to, at and beyond 39 weeks; low and high risk women.

Abstract: Hypertensive disorders are associated with maternal and neonatal complications. Though they are more common in women with history of prior preeclampsia, they can occur in uncomplicated pregnancies.To determine the proportion of adverse pregnancy outcomes in deliveries prior to or at ≥39 weeks, in uncomplicated singleton nulliparous women (low-risk), as well as women with history of preeclampsia in a prior gestation (high-risk).This was a secondary analysis from the multicenter trials of low dose aspirin for preeclampsia prevention in low and high-risk pregnancies. The proportion of adverse pregnancy outcomes including hypertensive disorders in pregnancy, small for gestational age, placental abruption, neonatal intensive critical unit admission, and respiratory distress syndrome were evaluated in the two groups. Adverse pregnancy outcomes were stratified by gestational age at delivery (<39 weeks and ≥39 weeks). Descriptive statistics were performed, and results reported as percentages.Three thousand twenty-one pregnancies were included in the low risk group, and 600 in the high risk one. In the low risk group 362 (12%) had hypertensive disorders, with 58% occurring at ≥39 weeks. In the low risk group, the rate of small for gestational age was of 5.9%, placental abruption 0.4%, neonatal intensive care unit admission 9%, and respiratory distress syndrome 3.5%. sixty per cent of all small for gestational age, 31% of all placenta abruptions, 44% of all neonatal intensive care unit admissions and 33% of respiratory distress syndrome cases, occurred at ≥39 weeks in the low risk group. In contrast in the high risk group, 197 (33%) patients developed a hypertensive disorder, with 35.5% occurring at ≥39 weeks. The overall rate of small for gestational age was 9.2%, abruption 2%, neonatal intensive care unit admission 15.5%, and respiratory distress syndrome 5%. In this group, 24% of all small for gestational age, 8.3% of all placental abruptions, 16% of all neonatal intensive care unit admissions and 3% of respiratory distress syndrome cases, were at ≥39 weeks.We found that in low-risk women, the majority of hypertensive disorders occur at ≥39 weeks, whereas in women with prior preeclampsia the majority develops at < 39 weeks. Moreover, a third of all placental abruption occurred at or beyond 39 weeks in the low risk group. Our findings suggest that in low-risk women, a policy of delivery at 39 weeks may prevent most of the adverse outcome that occurs beyond that gestational age cutoff.

Pub.: 28 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

A Network Model of Hand Hygiene: How Good Is Good Enough to Stop the Spread of MRSA?

Abstract: BACKGROUND Simulation models have been used to investigate the impact of hand hygiene on methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) transmission within the healthcare setting, but they have been limited by their ability to accurately model complex patient-provider interactions. METHODS Using a network-based modeling approach, we created a simulated neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) representing the potential for per-hour infant-infant MRSA transmission via the healthcare worker resulting in subsequent colonization. The starting prevalence of MRSA colonized infants varied from 2% to 8%. Hand hygiene ranged from 0% (none) to 100% (theoretical maximum), with an expected effectiveness of 88% inferred from literature. RESULTS Based on empiric care provided within a 1-hour period, the mean number of infant-infant MRSA transmissible opportunities per hour was 1.3. Compared to no hand hygiene and averaged across all initial colonization states, colonization was reduced by approximately 29%, 51%, 67%, 80%, and 86% for the respective levels of hygiene: 24%, 48%, 68%, 88%, and 100%. Preterm infants had a 61% increase in MRSA colonization, and mechanically ventilated infants had a 27% increase. CONCLUSIONS Even under optimal hygiene conditions, horizontal transmission of MRSA is possible. Additional prevention paradigms should focus on the most acute patients because they are at greatest risk. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2017;1-8.

Pub.: 29 Jun '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Comparison of Follow-up Courses after Discharge from Neonatal Intensive Care Unit between Very Low Birth Weight Infants with and without Home Oxygen.

Abstract: In order to investigate the clinical impact of home oxygen use for care of premature infants, we compared the follow-up courses after neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) discharge between very low birth weight infants (VLBWIs) with and without home oxygen. We retrospectively identified 1,232 VLBWIs born at 22 to 32 weeks of gestation, discharged from the NICU of 43 hospitals in Korea between April 2009 and March 2010, and followed them up until April 2011. Clinical outcomes, medical service uses, and readmission and death rates during follow-up after the NICU discharge were compared between VLBWIs with (HO, n = 167) and those without (CON, n = 1,056) home oxygen at discharge. The HO infants comprised 13.7% of the total VLBWIs with significant institutional variations and showed a lower gestational age (GA) and birth weight than the CON infants. The HO infants had more frequent regular pediatric outpatient clinic visits (12.7 ± 7.5 vs. 9.5 ± 6.6; P < 0.010) and emergency center visits related to respiratory problems (2.5 ± 2.2 vs. 1.8 ± 1.4; P < 0.010) than the CON infants. The HO infants also had significantly increased readmission (adjusted hazard ratio [HR], 1.60; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.25-2.04) and death risks (adjusted HR, 7.40; 95% CI, 2.06-26.50) during up to 2 years following the NICU discharge. These increased readmission and death risks in the HO infants were not related to their prematurity degree. In conclusion, home oxygen use after discharge increases the risks for healthcare utilization, readmission, and death after NICU discharge in VLBWIs, regardless of GA, requiring more careful health care monitoring during their follow-up.

Pub.: 01 Jul '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Rehospitalization Through Childhood and Adolescence: Association with Neonatal Morbidities in Infants of Very Low Birth Weight.

Abstract: To evaluate the impact of major neonatal morbidities on the risks for rehospitalization in children and adolescents born of very low birth weight.An observational study was performed on data of the Israel Neonatal Network linked together with the Maccabi Healthcare Services medical records. After discharge from the neonatal intensive care unit, 6385 infants of very low birth weight born from 1995 to 2012 were registered with Maccabi Healthcare Services and formed the study cohort. Multivariable negative binomial regression models were calculated to estimate the adjusted relative risk (aRR) and 95% CI for hospitalization.Up to 18 years following discharge, 3956 infants were hospitalized at least once. The median age of follow-up was 10.7 years with total of follow-up of 67 454 patient years and 10 895 hospitalizations. The risks for rehospitalization were increased significantly for each of the neonatal morbidities: surgical necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), aRR 2.71 (95% CI 2.08-3.53), intraventricular hemorrhage grades 3-4, 2.13 (1.85-2.46), periventricular leukomalacia (PVL), 1.83 (1.58-2.13), bronchopulmonary dysplasia, 1.94 (1.72-2.17), and retinopathy of prematurity stages 3-4, 1.59 (1.36-1.85). During the first 4 years, children with surgically treated NEC, intraventricular hemorrhage, PVL, or bronchopulmonary dysplasia had 1.5- to 2.5-fold greater risks for hospitalization compared with those without the specific morbidity. In the 11th-14th and 15th-18th years, respectively, surgically treated NEC was associated with a 3.05 (1.32-7.04) and 3.26 (0.99-10.7) aRR for hospitalization, and PVL was associated with a 2.67 (1.79-3.97) and 3.47 (2.03-5.92) aRR for hospitalization.Specific major neonatal morbidities as well as the number of morbidities were associated with excess risks of rehospitalization through childhood and adolescence.

Pub.: 01 Jul '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Nutritional strategies and gut microbiota composition as risk factors for necrotizing enterocolitis in very-preterm infants.

Abstract: Background: The pathophysiology of necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) remains poorly understood.Objective: We assessed the relation between feeding strategies, intestinal microbiota composition, and the development of NEC.Design: We performed a prospective nationwide population-based study, EPIPAGE 2 (Etude Epidémiologique sur les Petits Ages Gestationnels), including preterm infants born at <32 wk of gestation in France in 2011. From individual characteristics observed during the first week of life, we calculated a propensity score for the risk of NEC (Bell's stage 2 or 3) after day 7 of life. We analyzed the relation between neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) strategies concerning the rate of progression of enteral feeding, the direct-breastfeeding policy, and the onset of NEC using general linear mixed models to account for clustering by the NICU. An ancillary propensity-matched case-control study, EPIFLORE (Etude Epidémiologique de la flore), in 20 of the 64 NICUs, analyzed the intestinal microbiota by culture and 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequencing.Results: Among the 3161 enrolled preterm infants, 106 (3.4%; 95% CI: 2.8%, 4.0%) developed NEC. Individual characteristics were significantly associated with NEC. Slower and intermediate rates of progression of enteral feeding strategies were associated with a higher risk of NEC, with an adjusted OR of 2.3 (95% CI: 1.2, 4.5; P = 0.01) and 2.0 (95% CI: 1.1, 3.5; P = 0.02), respectively. Less favorable and intermediate direct-breastfeeding policies were associated with higher NEC risk as well, with an adjusted OR of 2.5 (95% CI: 1.1, 5.8; P = 0.03) and 2.3 (95% CI: 1.1, 4.8; P = 0.02), respectively. Microbiota analysis performed in 16 cases and 78 controls showed an association between Clostridium neonatale and Staphylococcus aureus with NEC (P = 0.001 and P = 0.002).Conclusions: A slow rate of progression of enteral feeding and a less favorable direct-breastfeeding policy are associated with an increased risk of developing NEC. For a given level of risk assessed by propensity score, colonization by C. neonatale and/or S. aureus is significantly associated with NEC. This trial (EPIFLORE study) was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT01127698.

Pub.: 01 Jul '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Short-term and long-term outcomes of preterm neonates with acute severe pulmonary hypertension following rescue treatment with inhaled nitric oxide.

Abstract: To describe short-term and long-term outcomes of preterm neonates with severe acute pulmonary hypertension (aPHT) in relation to response to rescue inhaled nitric oxide (iNO) therapy.Retrospective cohort studyover a 6 year period.Tertiary neonatal intensive care unit.89 neonates <35 weeks gestational age (GA) who received rescue iNO for aPHT, including 62 treated at ≤3 days of age (early aPHT).iNO ≥ 1 hour.Positive responders (reduction in fraction of inspired oxygen (FiO2) ≥0.20 within 1 hour of iNO) were compared with non-responders. Primary outcome was survival without moderate-to-severe disability at 18 months of age.Mean (SD) GA and birth weight was 27.7 (3.0) weeks and 1077 (473) gm, respectively. Median (IQR) pre-iNO FiO2 was 1.0 (1.0, 1.0). Positive response rate to iNO was 46%. Responders showed improved survival without disability (51% vs 15%; p<0.01), lower mortality (34% vs 71%; p<0.01) and disability among survivors (17% vs 50%; p=0.06). Higher GA (adjusted OR: 1.44 (95% CI 1.10 to 1.89)), aPHT in context of preterm prolonged rupture of membranes (6.26 (95% CI 1.44 to 27.20)) and positive response to rescue iNO (5.81 (95% CI 1.29 to, 26.18)) were independently associated with the primary outcome. Compared with late cases (>3 days of age), early aPHT had a higher response rate to iNO (61% vs 11%; p<0.01) and lower mortality (43% vs 78%; p<0.01).A positive response to rescue iNO in preterm infants with aPHT is associated with survival benefit, which is not offset by long-term disability.

Pub.: 10 May '17, Pinned: 03 Jul '17

Outcomes following indomethacin prophylaxis in extremely preterm infants in an all-referral NICU.

Abstract: We examined data from a contemporary cohort of extreme prematurity (EP) infants admitted to an all-referral Children's Hospital neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) to determine whether prophylactic indomethacin (PI) may continue to benefit these patients.An observational study utilizing the small baby ICU data registry that was queried for all EP infants admitted between 2005 and 2014 with documentation of PI use (671 total EP infants; 141 (21%) did not receive PI (control); 530 (79%) received PI (PI). This cohort of EP infants was born at outside hospitals and transferred to our level IV NICU with a mean age on admission of 13 days, well after the PI would have been administered.No difference existed between the control and PI groups in gestational age, birth weight, severity of illness, other in-hospital outcomes or developmental delay. PI infants had a significantly lower mortality rate (P=0.0004), lower relative risk (RR) for mortality 0.52 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.37 to 0.73, P=0.0001) and lower RR of developing the combined outcome of death or bronchopulmonary dysplasia (RR 0.91, 95% CI 0.85 to 0.98, P=0.012) when compared with the control group. Notably, there was no significant effect of PI on incidence of severe intraventricular hemorrhage or patent ductus arteriosus ligation.PI administration was associated with improved survival in EP infants referred to a level IV Children's Hospital NICU.Journal of Perinatology advance online publication, 15 June 2017; doi:10.1038/jp.2017.71.

Pub.: 16 Jun '17, Pinned: 30 Jun '17

Surgical outcome and etiologic heterogeneity of infants with biliary atresia who received Kasai operation less than 60 days after birth: A retrospective study.

Abstract: This study aimed to analyze the impact of etiologic heterogeneity and operation age on prognosis of infants with biliary atresia (BA) who received Kasai operation prior to 60 days of age.From 2004 to 2010, 158 infants received Kasai operation before turning 60 days old. According to Davenport 2012 classifications, 4 groups of BA were defined: cystic BA, syndrome BA, and associated malformation, cytomegalovirus (CMV)-associated BA, and isolated BA. Native (autologous) liver survival rates and incidence of cholangitis 2 years after operation, as well as jaundice clearance rates 3 months after operation, were recorded.Although infants who received the operation between 51 and 60 days of age had a better jaundice clearance 3 months after operation and lower incidence of cholangitis as compared with those under 40 or between 41 and 50 days of age, there was no significant difference in survival rates. Among types of BA, infants with cystic BA had the best prognosis. In the syndrome BA and associated malformations group, as well as CMV-associated group, infants who received the operation early (<40 days of age) had a worse outcome as compared with those who received the operation between 41 and 50 days or 51 and 60 days of age.Both clinical etiologic heterogeneity and operation age may influence BA prognosis.

Pub.: 29 Jun '17, Pinned: 30 Jun '17

Late-Term Gestation Is Associated With Improved Survival in Neonates With Congenital Heart Disease Following Postoperative Extracorporeal Life Support.

Abstract: Several population-based studies have shown that gestational age 39-40 weeks at birth is associated with superior outcomes in various pediatric settings. A high proportion of births for neonates with congenital heart disease occur before 39 weeks. We aimed to assess the influence of late-term gestation (39-40 wk) on survival in neonates requiring extracorporeal life support following surgery for congenital heart disease.Retrospective cohort study.The Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia.Neonates requiring extracorporeal life support after cardiac surgery for congenital heart disease.From 2005 to 2014, 110 neonates (10.5% of neonates undergoing cardiac surgery) required extracorporeal life support after cardiac surgery. Indications were failure to separate from cardiopulmonary bypass in 40 (36%), extracorporeal cardiopulmonary resuscitation in 48 (44%), progressive low cardiac output in 15 (14%), and other reasons in seven (6%). Extracorporeal life support duration was 94 hours (interquartile range, 53-135), and 54 (49%) underwent single ventricle repair. Gestation at birth (n [%]) was as follows: less than 37 weeks, 19 (17%); 37-38 weeks, 38 (35%); 39-40 weeks, 50 (45%); 41 weeks or more, 3 (3%). By multivariable analysis (controlling for age, era of extracorporeal life support 2005-2009 vs 2010-2014, single ventricle status and acute renal failure), gestational age of 39-40 weeks was associated with the lowest odds for intensive care mortality: using less than 37 weeks as referent, the adjusted odds ratio (95% CI) for 37-38 weeks was 0.41 (0.12-1.33); for 39-40 weeks, 0.27 (0.08-0.84); and for 41 weeks or more, 1.06 (0.07-14.7). Similar association was also seen in a subcohort of study neonates (n = 66) who were commenced on extracorporeal life support after admission to intensive care: using less than 37 weeks as referent, the adjusted odds ratio (95% CI) for 37-38 weeks was 0.52 (0.10-2.80) and for 39-40 weeks, 0.15 (0.03-0.81).In this cohort of neonates requiring extracorporeal life support following cardiac surgery, 39-40 weeks of gestation at birth is associated with the best survival. The additional maturity gained by reaching a gestation of at least 39 weeks is likely to confer a survival advantage in this high-risk cohort.

Pub.: 29 Jun '17, Pinned: 30 Jun '17