Objective: To determine whether early pulmonary hypertension (PH) at 10-14 days of life in preterm infants is associated with bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) at 36 weeks' postmenstrual age (PMA).
Study design: This was a prospective observational cohort study of infants <28 weeks' gestation. Exclusion criteria were any major anomaly, genetic syndrome, or death before the initial echocardiogram. Echocardiograms were performed between 10 and 14 days of life and at 36 weeks' PMA to assess PH. BPD and its severity were determined at 36 weeks PMA by the National Institutes of Health workshop definition.
Results: From March 2011 to April 2013, of 146 consecutively admitted infants <28 weeks, 120 were enrolled. One infant was excluded, 17 did not consent, and 8 died before undergoing a study echocardiogram. At 10-14 days of life, 10 infants had early PH (8%). Male sex (56% vs 40%), gestational age (26(+2) ± 1(+2) vs 25(+6) ± 1(+4) weeks), birth weight (837 ± 205 g vs 763 ± 182 g), and small for gestational age (14% vs 20%) were not significantly different among infants with no PH and early PH, respectively. Infants with early PH required >0.3 fraction of inspired oxygen by day 10 of life (70% vs 27%, P < .01). Moderate/severe BPD or death was greater among infants with early PH (90%) compared with no PH (47%, relative risk 1.9, 95% CI 1.43-2.53).
Conclusion: In this prospective, single-center cohort, early PH was associated with moderate/severe BPD or death at 36 weeks' PMA.
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