Intensive Care for Extreme Prematurity — Moving beyond Gestational Age

Center for Clinical Research and Evidence-Based Medicine, University of Texas Medical School at Houston, Houston, TX 77030, USA.
New England Journal of Medicine (Impact Factor: 55.87). 05/2008; 358(16):1672-81. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa073059
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Decisions regarding whether to administer intensive care to extremely premature infants are often based on gestational age alone. However, other factors also affect the prognosis for these patients.
We prospectively studied a cohort of 4446 infants born at 22 to 25 weeks' gestation (determined on the basis of the best obstetrical estimate) in the Neonatal Research Network of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development to relate risk factors assessable at or before birth to the likelihood of survival, survival without profound neurodevelopmental impairment, and survival without neurodevelopmental impairment at a corrected age of 18 to 22 months.
Among study infants, 3702 (83%) received intensive care in the form of mechanical ventilation. Among the 4192 study infants (94%) for whom outcomes were determined at 18 to 22 months, 49% died, 61% died or had profound impairment, and 73% died or had impairment. In multivariable analyses of infants who received intensive care, exposure to antenatal corticosteroids, female sex, singleton birth, and higher birth weight (per each 100-g increment) were each associated with reductions in the risk of death and the risk of death or profound or any neurodevelopmental impairment; these reductions were similar to those associated with a 1-week increase in gestational age. At the same estimated likelihood of a favorable outcome, girls were less likely than boys to receive intensive care. The outcomes for infants who underwent ventilation were better predicted with the use of the above factors than with use of gestational age alone.
The likelihood of a favorable outcome with intensive care can be better estimated by consideration of four factors in addition to gestational age: sex, exposure or nonexposure to antenatal corticosteroids, whether single or multiple birth, and birth weight. ( numbers, NCT00063063 [] and NCT00009633 [].).

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Available from: Charles E Green, Sep 27, 2015
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    • "kánsan rontotta, ha többes terhességből született a koraszülött [11]. Az irodalmi adatok alapján túlélést befolyásoló tényezőnek tekintett gesztációs kor, nagyobb születési súly, szteroidprofi laxis, női nem, a császármetszés gyakorisága és az ikerterhességek arányában nem találtunk szignifi káns eltérést a két vizsgált csoportunk között. "
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    ABSTRACT: The mortality and morbidity of extremely low birth weight infants (birth weight below 1000 grams) are different from low birth weight and term infants. The Centers for Disease Control statistics from the year 2009 shows that the mortality of preterm infants with a birth weight less than 500 grams is 83.4% in the United States. In many cases, serious complications can be expected in survivals. The aim of this retrospective study was to find prognostic factors which may improve the survival of the group of extremely low birth weight infants (<500 grams). Data of extremely low birth weight infants with less than 500 grams born at the 1st Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Semmelweis University between January 1, 2006 and June 1, 2012 were analysed, and mortality and morbidity of infants between January 1, 2006 and December 31, 2008 (period I) were compared those found between January 1, 2009 and June 1, 2012 (period II). Statistical analysis was performed with probe-t, -F and -Chi-square. Survival rate of extremely low birth weight infants less than 500 grams in period 1 and II was 26.31% and 55.17%, respectively (p = 0.048), whereas the prevalence of complications were not significantly different between the period examined. The mean gestational age of survived infants (25.57 weeks) was higher than the gestational age of infants who did not survive (24.18 weeks) and the difference was statistically significant (p = 0.0045). Education of the team of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, professional routine and technical conditions may improve the survival chance of preterm infants. The use of treatment protocols, conditions of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and steroid prophylaxis may improve the survival rate of extremely low birth weight infants. Orv. Hetil., 2015, 156(10), 404-408.
    Orvosi Hetilap 03/2015; 156(10):404-8. DOI:10.1556/OH.2015.30101
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    • "Pharmacological interventions on the mother and/or the baby are also considered. Of note, an algorithm designed to predict outcomes, that considers gestational age, birth weight, gender, use of prenatal steroids, and singleton pregnancy, may be useful to the caregivers [22]. In addition, the parents and the medical team have to consider the accessibility to specialized healthcare in neonatology and the experience level of the caregiving team, that may be different from a hospital to another. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background A wide range of dilemmas encountered in the health domain can be addressed more efficiently by a transdisciplinary approach. The complex context of extreme prematurity, which is raising important challenges for caregivers and parents, warrants such an approach. Methods In the present work, experts from various disciplinary fields, namely biomedical, epidemiology, psychology, ethics, and law, were enrolled to participate in a reflection. Gathering a group of experts could be very demanding, both in terms of time and resources, so we created a web-based discussion forum to facilitate the exchanges. The participants were mandated to solve two questions: “Which parameters should be considered before delivering survival care to a premature baby born at the threshold of viability?” and “Would it be acceptable to give different information to parents according to the sex of the baby considering that outcome differences exist between sexes?” Results The discussion forum was performed over a period of nine months and went through three phases: unidisciplinary, interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary, which required extensive discussions and the preparation of several written reports. Those steps were successfully achieved and the participants finally developed a consensual point of view regarding the initial questions. This discussion board also led to a concrete knowledge product, the publication of the popularized results as an electronic book. Conclusions We propose, with our transdisciplinary analysis, a relevant and innovative complement to existing guidelines regarding the decision-making process for premature infants born at the threshold of viability, with an emphasis on the respective responsabilities of the caregivers and the parents.
    BMC Research Notes 07/2014; 7(1):450. DOI:10.1186/1756-0500-7-450
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    • "However, obtaining peripheral blood is invasive and unsuitable for certain cohorts such as very low birthweight preterm infants because they have a small circulating blood volume (~85 ml/kg); [5-7] and it is not considered to be ethical to sample more than 1 ml for research purposes. Recalling these infants at a later stage when suitable amount of whole blood can be collected is problematic because the neonatal mortality rate in the very low birthweight cohort is significant, particularly in the high risk preterm group [8]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Genotyping requires biological sample collection that must be reliable, convenient and acceptable for patients and clinicians. Finding the most optimal procedure of sample collection for premature neonates who have a very limited blood volume is a particular challenge. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the use of umbilical cord (UC) tissue and newborn dried blood spot (DBS)-extracted genomic DNA (gDNA) as an alternative to venous blood-derived gDNA from premature neonates for molecular genetic analysis. All samples were obtained from premature newborn infants between 24-32 weeks of gestation. Paired blood and UC samples were collected from 31 study participants. gDNA was extracted from ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) anticoagulant-treated blood samples (~500 mul) and newborn DBSs (n = 723) using QIAamp DNA Micro kit (Qiagen Ltd., Crawley, UK); and from UC using Qiagen DNAeasy Blood and Tissue kit (Qiagen Ltd., Crawley, UK). gDNA was quantified and purity confirmed by measuring the A260:A280 ratio. PCR amplification and pyrosequencing was carried out to determine suitability of the gDNA for molecular genetic analysis. Minor allele frequency of two unrelated single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) was calculated using the entire cohort. Both whole blood samples and UC tissue provided good quality and yield of gDNA, which was considerably less from newborn DBS. The gDNA purity was also reduced after 3 years of storage of the newborn DBS. PCR amplification of three unrelated genes resulted in clear products in all whole blood and UC samples and 86%-100% of newborn DBS. Genotyping using pyrosequencing showed 100% concordance in the paired UC and whole blood samples. Minor allele frequencies of the two SNPs indicated that no maternal gDNA contamination occurred in the genotyping of the UC samples. gDNAs from all three sources are suitable for standard PCR and pyrosequencing assays. Given that UC provide good quality and quantity gDNA with 100% concordance in the genetic analysis with whole blood, it can replace blood sampling from premature infants. This is likely to reduce the stress and potential side effects associated with invasive sample collection and thus, greatly facilitate participant recruitment for genetic studies.
    BMC Genetics 10/2013; 14(1):105. DOI:10.1186/1471-2156-14-105 · 2.40 Impact Factor
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