Objective: To characterize use of volume infusion (VI) for infants who are > or =34 weeks' gestational age and receive intensive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR; defined as >1 minute of positive-pressure ventilation and chest compressions, with or without the administration of medications) in the delivery room and are admitted to the NICU.
Methods: A retrospective review of a resuscitation registry between January 1999 and June 2001 was conducted.
Results: Of 37,972 infants, 23 received CPR, including 13 with VI. Ten of 13 received VI for persistent bradycardia despite CPR, and only 3 of 13 received VI for suspicion of hypovolemia with poor perfusion. More VI versus no VI infants had Apgar scores < or =2 at 5 and 10 minutes. VI versus no VI infants had lower cord arterial pH, had higher arterial partial pressure of carbon dioxide, had larger base deficit, required longer CPR, and required more epinephrine. On admission to the NICU, VI versus no VI infants had lower blood pressure and larger base deficit over the first 2 hours but did not differ in arterial pH, arterial partial pressure of carbon dioxide, heart rate, mortality, or use of additional VI or buffer.
Conclusions: VI is rarely given for overt hypovolemia and more often for asphyxiated infants who are slow to respond to intensive CPR. Persistent postnatal hypotension in VI infants suggests that other factors, eg, myocardial dysfunction, may be important contributors to lack of response to CPR.