Neurodevelopmental Outcome of Infants Resuscitated with Air or 100% Oxygen: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
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BACKGROUND: The use of air for the initial resuscitation of newborn infants has been shown to reduce neonatal mortality. However, a precise estimate of the neurodevelopmental status upon follow-up of infants resuscitated in air is lacking. OBJECTIVE: To perform a meta-analysis of all studies reporting resuscitation of newborn infants with air or 100% oxygen that included follow-up data. METHODS: Bibliographic databases were searched. In addition, we estimated the effect of loss to follow-up on our analysis of abnormal neurodevelopmental outcome. RESULTS: We identified 10 studies in which newborn infants had been randomly or quasi-randomly assigned to resuscitation with air or 100% oxygen. Three of these 10 studies had available follow-up data. A total of 678 infants were enrolled at centers that performed follow-up of these infants. Of these, 113 died, leaving 565 infants potentially eligible for follow-up. A total of 414 children were evaluated (73% of eligible children; 195 resuscitated with air and 219 with 100% oxygen). In the air group, 12.8% of infants had an abnormal neurodevelopmental outcome, compared with 10.5% in the 100% oxygen group [typical relative risk (RR) 1.24, 95% confidence interval 0.73-2.10]. This is consistent with an RR of abnormal development as low as 0.41 or as high as 2.28. CONCLUSIONS: Long-term follow-up did not detect any significant differences in these two groups regarding abnormal development. However, the results are imprecise and could be consistent with significant harm or benefit.
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