Objective: To assess, among premature infants with early respiratory distress syndrome (RDS), the effect of one dose of intratracheally administered surfactant followed by extubation to nasal continuous positive airway pressure (NCPAP) on subsequent mechanical ventilation (MV), when compared with NCPAP alone.
Study design: Randomized, blinded trial in infants 29 to 35 weeks' gestation with mild-to-moderate RDS requiring supplemental oxygen and NCPAP. Infants were randomized to intubation, surfactant treatment, and immediate extubation (surfactant group N=52), or to no intervention (control group N=53). All infants were subsequently managed with NCPAP.
Results: Need for later MV was 70% in the control group and 50% in the surfactant group. Surfactant group subjects had lower inspired oxygen fraction (FiO(2)) after study intervention and were less likely to require subsequent surfactant. Overall surfactant use, duration of O(2) therapy, length of stay, and bronchopulmonary dysplasia were unaffected.
Conclusion: Among premature infants with mild-to-moderate RDS, transient intubation for surfactant administration reduces later MV.
Journal of Perinatology (2005) 25, 703-708. doi:10.1038/sj.jp.7211381; published online 15 September 2005.