Home oxygen management of neonatal chronic lung disease in Western Australia

J Paediatr Child Health. 1995 Jun;31(3):185-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1754.1995.tb00782.x.


Objective: To describe the course and management of infants with neonatal chronic lung disease who were discharged home on low-flow supplemental oxygen.

Methodology: Retrospective case series in Western Australia.

Results: Fifty-six neonates born in the 6 year period 1987-92 inclusive were discharged home on supplemental oxygen. The median gestational age was 27 weeks (range 22-40), median birthweight 865 g (range 450-3350), median oxygen flow rates 125 mL/min (range 30-850). The median corrected age at discharge was 1 month (range term-9.5) and this had decreased throughout the study period. Acute hospital readmissions were common (36 of 56, 64%). The majority of these admissions were for wheezing illnesses. Three infants died. The median corrected age at weaning from day oxygen was 4 months (range term-33) and from night oxygen was 6 months (range 2-38). Monitoring of oxygen saturation in air, in low-flow oxygen and in the overnight sleep study were important non-invasive guides in deciding when patients were ready for discharge, reducing the oxygen flow rate and when oxygen could be ceased, respectively.

Conclusions: The home oxygen programme enables infants with neonatal chronic lung disease to be discharged home earlier, is safe, and well accepted by parents and community health care workers.

MeSH terms

  • Chronic Disease
  • Female
  • Home Care Services / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Lung Diseases / blood
  • Lung Diseases / congenital
  • Lung Diseases / therapy*
  • Male
  • Monitoring, Physiologic
  • Oxygen / blood
  • Oxygen Inhalation Therapy / methods*
  • Patient Discharge
  • Patient Readmission
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Western Australia


  • Oxygen