*Contributed equally to the study.
Increasing incidence of respiratory distress in neonates
Article first published online: 12 OCT 2007
©2007 The Author(s)/Journal Compilation © 2007 Foundation Acta Pædiatrica/Acta Pædiatrica
Volume 96, Issue 11, pages 1577–1581, November 2007
How to Cite
Ersch, J., Roth-Kleiner, M., Baeckert, P. and Bucher, H. U. (2007), Increasing incidence of respiratory distress in neonates. Acta Paediatrica, 96: 1577–1581. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.2007.00440.x
- Issue published online: 12 OCT 2007
- Article first published online: 12 OCT 2007
- Received 11 December 2006; revised 23 April 2007; accepted 27 June 2007.
- Respiratory distress;
- Newborn infant;
Aim: To document the change in the incidence of respiratory distress (RD), related interventions and mortality in neonates admitted to primary, secondary and tertiary neonatal units within a geographically defined population over a period of 30 years.
Methods: RD was defined as a clinical picture irrespective of the etiology. Information was collected retrospectively for 1974, 1984, 1994 and 2004 from all neonatal units in Switzerland.
Results: In the 30 years studied the proportion of infants hospitalized with RD increased from 1.9% to 3.8% of the whole neonatal population and from 30% to 53% of all infants admitted to a neonatal unit. Treatment of RD changed significantly. Mechanical ventilation decreased from 31% to 16%, nasal CPAP increased from almost 0% to 26% and surfactant administration increased from 0% to 53% in infants with hyaline membrane disease. Overall mortality decreased in infants with RD from 15.5% to 3.5%.
Conclusions: The incidence of RD in infants admitted to neonatal units doubled over the last 30 years in a geographically defined neonatal population. This rise can predominantly be ascribed to infants with birth weight >2500 g and may reflect the corresponding increase in the rate of caesarean section.