Aim: To assess if growth retarded (SGA) extremely preterm infants have excess neonatal mortality and morbidity.
Methods: Cohort study of all infants born alive at 22-27 weeks’ gestational age (GA) in Norway during 1999-2000. Outcomes were compared between those who were SGA, defined as a birth weight less than the fifth percentile for GA and those who had weights at or above the fifth percentile.
Results: Of 365 infants with GA < 28 weeks, 31 (8%) were SGA. Among infants with GA < 28 weeks, only chronic lung disease was associated with SGA status (OR 2.7, 95% CI 1.0 to 7.2). SGA infants with GA 26-27 weeks had excess neonatal mortality (OR 3.8, 95% CI 1.3 to 11), chronic lung disease and significantly higher mean number of days (age) before tolerating full enteral nutrition. SGA infants with GA 22-25 weeks had an excess risk of necrotizing enterocolitis.
Conclusion: Extremely preterm SGA infants had excess neonatal mortality and morbidity in terms of necrotizing enterocolitis and chronic lung disease.
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