Prediction of prolonged ventilator dependence in preterm infants
Volutrauma is an important factor in the pathogenesis of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD). Our aims were to identify risk factors in the first 24 h for prolonged ventilator dependence and assess volume delivery and carbon dioxide levels in infants with evolving BPD. A retrospective study was undertaken of 41 infants born at less than 32 weeks of gestational age (GA). A higher tidal volume, minute volume and resistance and a lower GA, birth weight and compliance were associated with a significantly higher risk of ventilator dependence at 28 days. The strongest relationships were with birth weight (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve, AUROC = 0.771) and GA (AUROC = 0.813). Tidal volume remained significantly higher after adjusting for GA in those who remained ventilator dependent at 28 days. The 18 who remained ventilator dependent at 28 days had increased mean carbon dioxide (PCO2) levels with increasing age from a mean of 41 mmHg in the first 24 h to 65 mmHg at 28 days PMA (p < 0.001). The increase in PCO2 occurred despite increases in peak inflation pressures (p < 0.001), tidal volumes (p = 0.002) and minute volumes (p < 0.001).
What is Known:
• In prematurely born infants, excessive tidal volumes are important in the pathogenesis of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), but a tidal volume that is too low will increase the risk of atelectasis, work of breathing and energy expenditure.
What is New:
• A high tidal volume in the first 24 h was associated with an increased risk of ventilator dependence at 28 days, which remained significant after adjusting for gestational age. Carbon dioxide levels significantly increased over the first month despite increased pressures and volumes in those who remained ventilator dependent.
KeywordsTidal volume Compliance Resistance Ventilator dependence Carbon dioxide levels Gestational age
assist control ventilation
compliance of the respiratory system
peak inflation pressure
pressure limited ventilation
synchronised intermittent mandatory ventilation
vascular endothelial growth factor
KA and AG designed the study. KA, SK and IC collected the data. KA, TD and AG analysed the data. All authors were involved in the preparation of the manuscript, critically reviewed the manuscript and approved the final manuscript as submitted.
The research was supported by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre based at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London. The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR or the Department of Health.
Compliance and ethical standards
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Routinely collected data were analysed, hence informed consent was not required.
Conflict of interest
AG has held grants from various manufacturers (Abbot Laboratories, MedImmune) and ventilator manufacturers (SLE). Professor Greenough has received honoraria for giving lectures and advising various manufacturers (Abbot Laboratories, MedImmune) and ventilator manufacturers (SLE). Professor Greenough is currently receiving a non conditional educational grant from SLE.
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