AIMS To compare the effects of a single dose of frusemide administered either intravenously or by nebulisation on pulmonary mechanics in premature infants with evolving chronic lung disease.
METHODS The effect of frusemide on pulmonary mechanics was studied at a median postnatal age of 23 (range 14–52) days in 19 premature infants at 24 to 30 weeks gestational age, who had been dependent on mechanical ventilation since birth. Frusemide (1 mg/kg/body weight) was administered, in random order, intravenously and by nebulisation, on two separate occasions 24 hours apart. Pulmonary function studies were performed before and at 30, 60, and 120 minutes after administration of frusemide. Urine was collected for six hours immediately before and for six hours after administration of frusemide.
RESULTS Nebulised frusemide increased the tidal volume 31(SE 11.5)% and compliance 34 (SE 12)% after two hours, whereas no change in either was noted for up to two hours after intravenous frusemide administration. Neither intravenous nor nebulised frusemide had any effect on airway resistance. Six hour urine output increased from a mean (SE) of 3.3 (0.4) ml/kg/hour to 5.9 (0.8) ml/kg/hour following intravenous frusemide administration while nebulised frusemide had no effect on urine output. Urinary sodium, potassium, and chloride losses were also significantly higher after intravenous frusemide, whereas nebulised frusemide did not increase urinary electrolyte losses.
CONCLUSION Single dose nebulised frusemide improves pulmonary function in premature infants with evolving chronic lung disease without adverse effects on fluid and electrolyte balance.
- inhaled frusemide
- pulmonary mechanics
- chronic lung disease of prematurity
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