Chronic lung disease of prematurity: long-term respiratory outcome

Neonatology. 2014;105(4):352-6. doi: 10.1159/000360651. Epub 2014 May 30.


Chronic respiratory morbidity is a common adverse outcome of preterm birth, especially in infants who develop bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), which is still a major cause of long-term lung dysfunction with a heavy burden on health care services and medical resources throughout childhood. The most severely affected patients remain symptomatic even in adulthood, and this may be influenced also by environmental variables (e.g. smoking), which can contribute to persistent obstruction of airflow. Of all obstructive lung diseases in humans, BPD has the earliest onset and probably lasts the longest. Since the prevention of BPD is an elusive goal, minimizing neonatal lung injury and closely monitoring survivors remain the best courses of action. This review describes the clinical and functional changes characteristic of the long-term pulmonary sequelae of preterm birth, focusing particularly on BPD.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Animals
  • Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia / diagnosis
  • Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia / physiopathology
  • Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia / therapy*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature*
  • Lung / physiopathology*
  • Prognosis
  • Time Factors