Newborn screening for cystic fibrosis is associated with reduced treatment intensity

J Pediatr. 2005 Sep;147(3):306-11. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2005.05.034.


Objectives: To determine whether the improved clinical status after newborn screening (NBS) for cystic fibrosis (CF) segregates with increased therapeutic intervention compared with presentation by clinical diagnosis (CD).

Study design: In 2002, two populations (1 to 9 years of age) who presented (excluding meconium ileus) by NBS < or = 3 months of age or by CD were compared in an observational, cross-sectional design. NBS and CD populations (184 and 950 patients, respectively) were divided into 3-year age groups (1 to 3, 4 to 6, and 7 to 9 years). Therapies of duration >3 months were compared together with Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection status.

Results: NBS patients < or = 6 years of age received significantly fewer and less demanding therapies not explained by age, genotype, geography, or social deprivation. In 7- to 9-year-olds, significantly fewer NBS patients received intravenous antibiotics. NBS patients without P aeruginosa infection received significantly fewer therapies, but no differences were found between intermittently or chronically infected NBS and CD populations. Comparable results were found in deltaF508/deltaF508 subpopulations.

Conclusions: CF populations diagnosed by NBS are associated with reduced treatment compared with age- and genotype-matched CD control subjects.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Cystic Fibrosis / diagnosis*
  • Cystic Fibrosis / therapy*
  • Delivery of Health Care*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Long-Term Care
  • Neonatal Screening*
  • United Kingdom