Early versus delayed initiation of nasal continuous positive airway pressure for treatment of respiratory distress syndrome in premature newborns: A randomized clinical trial


Department of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran


Background: This prospective study was performed to identify whether the early use of nasal continuous positive airway pressure (n CPAP) would reduce the rate of endotracheal intubation, mechanical ventilation and surfactant administration.
Materials and Methods: This study was conducted from June 2009 to September 2010 in the Shahid Beheshti University Hospital, Isfahan-Iran. A total of 72 preterm infants with 25-30 weeks gestation who needed respiratory support at 5 min after birth entered the study. Infants were randomly assigned to the very early CPAP (initiated 5 min after birth) or to the late CPAP (initiated 30 min after birth) treatment groups. The primary outcomes were need for intubation and mechanical ventilation during the first 48 h after birth and secondary outcomes were death, pneumothorax, intraventricular hemorrhage, duration of mechanical ventilation and bronchopulmonary dysplasia.
Results: There were no significant differences between the two groups with regard to mortality rate, bronchopulmonary dysplasia and patent ductus arteriosus. The need for surfactant administration was significantly reduced in the early CPAP group (P = 0.04). Infants in the early CPAP group less frequently required intubation and mechanical ventilation.
Conclusions: Early n CPAP is more effective than late n CPAP for the treatment of respiratory distress syndrome. In addition, the early use of n CPAP would reduce the need for some invasive procedures such as intubation and mechanical ventilation.


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