Variability for Age at Successful Extubation in Infants with Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia

J Pediatr. 2023 Feb:253:129-134.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2022.09.031. Epub 2022 Oct 3.


Objective: The objective of this study was to characterize clinical factors associated with successful extubation in infants with congenital diaphragmatic hernia.

Study design: Using the Children's Hospitals Neonatal Database, we identified infants with congenital diaphragmatic hernia from 2017 to 2020 at 32 centers. The main outcome was age in days at the time of successful extubation, defined as the patient remaining extubated for 7 consecutive days. Unadjusted Kaplan-Meier and multivariable Cox proportional hazards ratio equations were used to estimate associations between clinical factors and the main outcome. Observations occurred through 180 days after birth.

Results: There were 840 eligible neonates with a median gestational age of 38 weeks and birth weight of 3.0 kg. Among survivors (n = 693), the median age at successful extubation was 15 days (interquartile range [IQR]: 8-29 days, 95th percentile: 71 days). For nonsurvivors (n = 147), the median age at death was 21 days (IQR: 11-39 days, 95th percentile: 110 days). Center (adjusted hazards ratio: 0.22-15, P < .01), low birth weight, intrathoracic liver position, congenital heart disease, lower 5-minute Apgar score, lower pH upon admission to Children's Hospitals Neonatal Database center, and use of extracorporeal support were independently associated with older age at successful extubation. Tracheostomy was associated with multiple failed extubations.

Conclusion: Our findings suggest that infants who have not successfully extubated by about 3 months of age may be candidates for tracheostomy with chronic mechanical ventilation or palliation. The variability of timing of successful extubation among our centers supports the development of practice guidelines after validating clinical criteria.

Keywords: CDH; CHNC; neonate.

MeSH terms

  • Airway Extubation
  • Child
  • Hernias, Diaphragmatic, Congenital* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Low Birth Weight
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Respiration, Artificial
  • Retrospective Studies