Neonatal infections

Curr Opin Pediatr. 1996 Feb;8(1):6-10. doi: 10.1097/00008480-199602000-00003.


Neonatal infection still carries a high mortality and morbidity. The spectrum of infection is broad and includes congenital syphilis and viral infections. Sadly, nosocomial infection is common, particularly due to coagulase negative staphylococci. Very low birth weight infants are at high risk, particularly following prolonged central venous catheterization; continuous low-dose vancomycin may offer a solution to this important problem. Early identification of infected infants can be facilitated by measurement of interleukin-6 levels. The premature newborn, deficient in white cells and humoral immunity, is at high risk of infection; treatment rather than prophylaxis of such patients with immunoglobulin is efficacious. Exciting new management strategies appear to be the use of granulocyte colony-stimulating factor to enhance neutrophilia and zidovudine to reduce vertical transmission of HIV infection.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Newborn, Diseases* / microbiology
  • Infant, Newborn, Diseases* / mortality
  • Infant, Newborn, Diseases* / physiopathology
  • Infections* / microbiology
  • Infections* / mortality
  • Infections* / physiopathology
  • Neutropenia / physiopathology
  • Neutropenia / therapy
  • Risk Factors
  • Survival Rate


  • Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor