Transporting newborns with transposition of the great arteries

Authors

  • Patricia Woods,

    Corresponding author
    1. Grace Centre for Newborn Care, Sydney Children's Hospitals Network (Westmead)
    • Newborn and Paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS), Sydney Children's Hospitals Network (Westmead)
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  • Kathryn Browning Carmo,

    1. Newborn and Paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS), Sydney Children's Hospitals Network (Westmead)
    2. Grace Centre for Newborn Care, Sydney Children's Hospitals Network (Westmead)
    3. The University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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  • Margaret Wall,

    1. Newborn and Paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS), Sydney Children's Hospitals Network (Westmead)
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  • Andrew Berry

    1. Newborn and Paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS), Sydney Children's Hospitals Network (Westmead)
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  • Declaration of conflict of interest: None declared.

Correspondence: Dr Patricia Woods, Newborn and Paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS), Sydney Children's Hospitals Network (Westmead), Sydney, NSW 2145, Australia. Fax: +61 2 9633 8782; email: patricia.woods@sswahs.nsw.gov.au

Abstract

Aims

The aim of the study was to examine the prevalence and management of outborn babies with a post-natally confirmed diagnosis of transposition of the great arteries (TGA) requiring transport by the Newborn and Paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS), New South Wales during the epoch 1991–2010.

Method

A retrospective audit of NETS database and case notes. The physiological status, interventions and any complications encountered from the point of referral to NETS (pre-transport), stabilisation (transport) and subsequent admission to the receiving hospital (post-transport) were evaluated.

Results

One hundred fifty-seven infants with TGA were transported, with an average of eight per year (1:11 598 births). Seven (4%) had an antenatal diagnosis, and 72 (46%) had a post-natal diagnosis prior to referral. Physiological and clinical parameters demonstrated overall clinical stability; however, 47% of the babies had a PaO2 <30 mmHg, and approximately one-fifth had oxygen saturations <70%. Rates of mechanical ventilation and prostaglandin E1 administration were approximately 50%. A quarter of transported babies encountered a transport-related event, including one death and two babies for which a decision was reached to forego life-sustaining treatment at the referring hospital.

Conclusions

Most newborns with TGA remain stable or improve during transport. There is a rate of adverse events; however, this reinforces the need to facilitate delivery where there is ready access to interventional paediatric cardiology services.

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