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High-flow support in very preterm infants in Australia and New Zealand


Background Randomised trials suggest that high-flow (HF) therapy is comparable with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) for postextubation respiratory support in neonates, and HF has been widely adopted in neonatal intensive care.

Methods We conducted a population-based study of very preterm infants born <32 weeks’ gestation within the Australian and New Zealand Neonatal Network (ANZNN) data set from 2009 to 2012, who received respiratory support with HF.

Results 3372 very preterm infants were treated with HF. HF use in this population increased significantly from 15% in 2009 to 35% in 2012. In 2012, 53% (542/1029) of extremely preterm infants born <28 weeks’ gestation received HF. 98% (3308/3372) of infants had received endotracheal ventilation or CPAP prior to receiving HF. The maximum HF gas flow was ≤8 L/min in almost all infants.

Conclusions HF use in extremely preterm and very preterm infants increased significantly within the ANZNN from 2009 to 2012.

  • Non-invasive ventilation
  • Infant, premature
  • Respiratory distress syndrome, newborn
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