Rationale: Infants and children with chronic lung disease of prematurity (CLDP) are at increased risk for respiratory morbidities. We sought to determine (1) whether socio-economic status, race/ethnicity, and/or sex are risk factors for respiratory morbidities and (2) whether disparities in care existed for major therapy decisions such as home supplemental oxygen and gastrostomy tubes as well as initial length of stay in the neonatal intensive care unit.
Methods: Between January 2008 and February 2010 sociodemographic and respiratory morbidity data were collected on premature (<32 weeks gestation) infants and children (<3 years old) with CLDP. Associations between risk factors and respiratory morbidities and treatment parameters were examined using adjusted regression models.
Results: Data were collected on 135 subjects (gestational age: 26.2±2.0 weeks). Self-reported non-Whites were more likely to report rescue medication use in the past 7 days [adjusted OR: 2.87 (1.28-6.45), P=0.011] and the use of systemic steroids for respiratory symptoms since the last clinic visit [adjusted OR: 2.12 (1.02-4.43), P=0.045]. Lower median household income was associated with increased activity limitations [adjusted OR: 2.79 (1.16-6.70), P=0.022] and public insurance coverage was associated with a decreased risk for hospitalizations [adjusted OR: 0.36 (0.13-0.98), P=0.045]. Major therapy decisions were not associated with disparities of care.
Conclusions: A key finding was that non-Whites were more likely to report rescue medication and systemic steroid use than Whites, but there was no difference in the frequency of respiratory symptoms or preventative inhaled corticosteroid use. Etiologies for these findings remain unclear and require further research.
Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.