Objective: Therapeutic strategies for patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) in very preterm infants remain controversial. To identify infants likely to benefit from treatment, we analysed the efficacy of a first course of ibuprofen in small-for-gestational age (SGA) newborns.
Study design: This single-centre retrospective study included 185 infants born at 24+0-27+6 weeks of gestation with haemodynamically significant PDA, who were treated by intravenous ibuprofen (Pedea): 10 mg/kg on day one and 5 mg/kg on days two and three. Birth weight and gestational age (GA) were analysed with reference to the standard deviations from the Olsen growth curve to define GA-specific Z-scores for birth weights. The efficacy of treatment was evaluated by echocardiography 48 hours after the last dose of ibuprofen. The primary outcome was failure of the first course of ibuprofen associated in a composite criterion with the most severe outcomes.
Results: The risk of treatment failure increased according to a continuous gradient in SGA neonates. A higher risk was observed on multiple regression analysis (crude OR: 3.8; 95% CI [1.2-12.3] p = 0.02; adjusted OR: 12.8; 95% CI [2.3-70.5] p=0.003).
Conclusion: There is a linear relationship between infant birth weight and PDA treatment: the failure rate of a first course of ibuprofen increases with increasing degree of growth restriction.