Impact of intercurrent respiratory infections on lung health in infants born <29 weeks with bronchopulmonary dysplasia

J Perinatol. 2014 Mar;34(3):223-8. doi: 10.1038/jp.2013.152. Epub 2013 Dec 12.


Objective: Assess the impact of intercurrent respiratory infections in infants <29 weeks gestational age (GA).

Study design: A retrospective cohort study of 111 infants born <29 weeks GA, controlling for bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) severity and assessing pulmonary health over the first year of life through oxygen, diuretic and inhaled steroid use.

Result: Regression analysis showed viral infections increased oxygen use (odds ratio (OR) of 15.5 (confidence interval (CI)=3.4, 71.3)). The trend test showed increasing numbers of viral infections were associated with increased oxygen (OR (95% CI)=6.4 (2.3 to 17.4), P=0.0003), diuretic (OR (95% CI)=2.4 (1.1to 5.2), P=0.02) and inhaled steroid use (OR (95% CI)=2.2 (1.003 to 5.2), P=0.049), whereas bacterial infections were not.

Conclusion: Viral infections caused more long-term pulmonary morbidity/mortality than bacterial infections on premature lung health, even when controlling for BPD.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Inhalation
  • Bacterial Infections / complications*
  • Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia / complications*
  • Diuretics / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases
  • Logistic Models
  • Lung Diseases / drug therapy
  • Lung Diseases / etiology*
  • Male
  • Oxygen Inhalation Therapy / statistics & numerical data
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / complications*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Steroids / therapeutic use*
  • Virus Diseases / complications*


  • Diuretics
  • Steroids