Nebulized hypertonic saline solution for acute bronchiolitis in infants. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 4:CD006458

Department of Maternal and Child Health, Federal University of Rio Grande, Rua Visconde Paranaguá 102, Centro, Rio Grande, RS, Brazil, 96201-900.
Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) (Impact Factor: 6.03). 02/2008; 5(4):CD006458. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006458.pub2
Source: PubMed


Acute viral bronchiolitis is the most common lower respiratory tract infection in infants up to two years old. Currently there is no effective treatment so standard treatment remains supportive care. Airway oedema (abnormal accumulation of fluid) and mucus plugging can cause wheezing and difficulty breathing in these patients. Nebulised hypertonic saline may be a beneficial treatment to manage acute bronchiolitis because it can improve airway hygiene. This review was conducted to assess the effects of hypertonic (≥ 3%) saline solution administered via a nebuliser in infants with acute bronchiolitis, compared with nebulised normal (0.9%) saline. The establishment of a therapeutic role for hypertonic saline solution may provide a cheap and effective therapy for these patients. We included 11 randomised trials involving 1090 infants with mild to moderate bronchiolitis. All but one of the 11 trials are considered as high-quality studies with low risk of error (i.e. bias) in their conclusions. Meta-analysis suggests that nebulised hypertonic saline could lead to a reduction of 1.2 days in the mean length of hospital stay among infants hospitalised for non-severe acute bronchiolitis and improve the clinical severity score in both outpatient and inpatient populations. No significant short-term effects (at 30 to 120 minutes) of one to three doses of nebulised hypertonic saline were observed among emergency department patients. However, more trials are needed to address this question. There were no significant adverse effects noted with the use of nebulised hypertonic saline when administered along with bronchodilators. Given the clinically relevant benefit and good safety profile, nebulised hypertonic saline used in conjunction with bronchodilators should be considered an effective and safe treatment for infants with mild to moderate acute viral bronchiolitis.

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    • "Inpatients Outpatients Zhang L 2013 "
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    ABSTRACT: Bronchiolitis is the most common cause of hospitalization among infants during the first 12 months of life, with high direct and indirect cost for health system and families. Different treatment approaches co-exist worldwide resulting in many drugs prescribed, without any proven benefit. Twenty systematic reviews of randomized clinical trials (SRCTs) on management of acute bronchiolitis in children were retrieved through 5 databases and their methodological quality was determined using an AMSTAR tool. Epinephrine showed impact only in short-term outcomes among outpatients (reduced admission at day 1 and improved the clinical score in the first 2hours, compared to placebo) and inpatients (decreased length of stay (LOS) and improved saturation only in the first 2hours, compared to nebulized salbutamol, but with high heterogeneity). Nebulized 3% saline among inpatients (but not in the emergency department setting) decreased hospital LOS. In small trials, exogenous surfactant among children may decrease the duration of mechanical ventilation and intensive care unit LOS and had favorable effects on oxygenation and CO2 elimination at 24hrs. Although several SRCTs are currently available, only few treatments show clinically important improvements. Therefore, it is still difficult to prepare a well-established and accepted guideline for the treatment of acute bronchiolitis. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2015 · Paediatric respiratory reviews
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    • "Inhalations with (racemic) adrenaline/epinephrine are commonly used in some countries, but the evidence is sparse [5]. Recently, studies of inhalations with hypertonic saline have been promising, but more studies are awaited [6]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is commonly used to relieve respiratory distress in infants with bronchiolitis, but has mostly been studied in an intensive care setting. Our prime aim was to evaluate the feasibility of CPAP for infants with bronchiolitis in a general paediatric ward, and secondary to assess capillary PCO2 (cPCO2) levels before and during treatment. Methods From May 1st 2008 to April 30th 2012, infants with bronchiolitis at Stavanger University Hospital were treated with CPAP in a general paediatric ward, but could be referred to an intensive care unit (ICU) when needed, according to in-house guidelines. Levels of cPCO2 were prospectively registered before the start of CPAP and at approximately 4, 12, 24 and 48 hours of treatment as long as CPAP was given. We had a continuous updating program for the nurses and physicians caring for the infants with CPAP. The study was population based. Results 672 infants (3.4%) were hospitalized with bronchiolitis. CPAP was initiated in 53 infants (0.3%; 7.9% of infants with bronchiolitis), and was well tolerated in all but three infants. 46 infants were included in the study, the majority of these (n = 33) were treated in the general ward only. These infants had lower cPCO2 before treatment (8.0; 7.7, 8.6)(median; quartiles) than those treated at the ICU (n = 13) (9.3;8.5, 9.9) (p < 0.001). The level of cPCO2 was significantly reduced after 4 h in both groups; 1.1 kPa (paediatric ward) (p < 0.001) and 1.3 kPa (ICU) (p = 0.002). Two infants on the ICU did not respond to CPAP (increasing cPCO2 and severe apnoe) and were given mechanical ventilation, otherwise no side effects were observed in either group treated with CPAP. Conclusion Treatment with CPAP for infants with bronchiolitis may be feasible in a general paediatric ward, providing sufficient staffing and training, and the possibility of referral to an ICU when needed.
    Full-text · Article · May 2014 · BMC Pediatrics
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    • "Bronchodilators were added to the study solution in three studies [40-42]; in the multi-centre study, bronchodilators were added in a majority of the treatments by attending physicians [43]. A recent systematic review which included these four trials, involving 254 infants with acute viral bronchiolitis (189 inpatients and 65 outpatients), concluded that nebulised 3% saline may significantly reduce the length of hospital stay and improve the clinical severity score [44]. Recently, another small RCT investigated the use of hypertonic saline in the emergency department setting, and the authors suggested that immediate clinical benefits may not be seen with nebulised hypertonic saline [45]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Acute viral bronchiolitis represents the most common lower respiratory tract infection in infants and young children and is associated with substantial morbidity and mortality. Respiratory syncytial virus is the most frequently identified virus, but many other viruses may also cause acute bronchiolitis. There is no common definition of acute viral bronchiolitis used internationally, and this may explain part of the confusion in the literature. Most children with bronchiolitis have a self limiting mild disease and can be safely managed at home with careful attention to feeding and respiratory status. Criteria for referral and admission vary between hospitals as do clinical practice in the management of acute viral bronchiolitis, and there is confusion and lack of evidence over the best treatment for this condition. Supportive care, including administration of oxygen and fluids, is the cornerstone of current treatment. The majority of infants and children with bronchiolitis do not require specific measures. Bronchodilators should not be routinely used in the management of acute viral bronchiolitis, but may be effective in some patients. Most of the commonly used management modalities have not been shown to have a clear beneficial effect on the course of the disease. For example, inhaled and systemic corticosteroids, leukotriene receptor antagonists, immunoglobulins and monoclonal antibodies, antibiotics, antiviral therapy, and chest physiotherapy should not be used routinely in the management of bronchiolitis. The potential effect of hypertonic saline on the course of the acute disease is promising, but further studies are required. In critically ill children with bronchiolitis, today there is little justification for the use of surfactant and heliox. Nasal continuous positive airway pressure may be beneficial in children with severe bronchiolitis but a large trial is needed to determine its value. Finally, very little is known on the effect of the various interventions on the development of post-bronchiolitic wheeze.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2011 · The Open Microbiology Journal
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