Impaired lung function after intubation and mechanical ventilation for surgical ligation of the ductus arteriosus in preterm infants.
ABSTRACT Significant patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) in the preterm infant has been associated with pulmonary edema and impaired gas exchange. Therefore, surgical ligature of the DA may be required. However, the effects of intubation and mechanical ventilation on the PDA-induced lung dysfunction presently are unknown. The aim of the study was to investigate whether intubation and mechanical ventilation alter pulmonary function in the preterm infant with significant PDA.
A prospective study.
The neonatal intensive care unit and department of anesthesiology in a university hospital.
Preterm infants <32 weeks' gestational age treated with nasal continuous positive airway pressure (NCPAP) and requiring mechanical ventilation for undergoing surgical DA ligature.
Respiratory, Doppler echocardiographic parameters, and chest x-ray transparencies of the lungs were measured during NCPAP and 2 hours after intubation and starting mechanical ventilation.
Twenty preterm infants (gestational age = 27 ± 1 wk, birth weight = 950 ± 140 g) were included. Heart rate, O(2) need, PaCO(2), and plasma lactate concentrations were significantly higher after intubation. The mean oxygenation index increased from 1.5 ± 0.6 to 7.2 ± 3 (p < 0.05). The overall transparencies of the lungs decreased after intubation. DA diameter, shortening fraction of the left ventricle, left pulmonary artery blood flow velocities, and left atrium/aorta did not change.
In preterm infants with significant PDA, intubation and mechanical ventilation before surgical DA ligation may increase the O(2) need and PaCO(2) and may promote lung edema formation. Mechanical ventilation-induced impairment in lung function is not associated with a change in pulmonary or systemic circulation or DA flow. Special care should be taken to prevent respiratory failure when intubation and mechanical ventilation are required for undergoing surgical DA ligation in the preterm infant.