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Initiation of respiratory support for extremely preterm infants at birth


Neonatal resuscitation algorithms recommend assessing breathing and heart rate (HR) of newborns and giving respiratory support when one or both are unsatisfactory. Recommendations also state that preterm infants may be supported with continuous positive airway pressure rather than routinely intubated for positive pressure ventilation (PPV). We wished to describe the prevalence and time of initiation of respiratory support of extremely preterm and extremely low birthweight (ELBW) infants at our hospital. We reviewed videos of 55 infants. Although most were breathing, practically all newly born extremely preterm ELBW infants were given respiratory support soon after arrival to the resuscitation cot. For the majority, this was done without knowing the HR. The majority received PPV; again, this was often done without knowing the HR. A quarter of infants were managed without any PPV.

  • resuscitation
  • neonatology

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