Sildenafil and retinopathy of prematurity risk in very low birth weight infants
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OBJECTIVE: To examine the effect of sildenafil therapy on development of severe retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) requiring surgical intervention in premature infants. STUDY DESIGN: We identified premature infants who were discharged from Pediatrix Medical Group neonatal intensive care units from 2003 to 2012 and who received an ophthalmologic exam. We matched each infant exposed to sildenafil before first eye exam to three nonexposed infants using propensity scoring to control for differences in baseline infant characteristics. We evaluated the association between sildenafil exposure and development of severe ROP using conditional logistic regression. RESULT: Of the 57 815 infants meeting inclusion criteria, 88 were exposed to sildenafil. We matched 81/88 (92%) sildenafil-exposed with 243 nonexposed infants. There was no difference in the proportion of infants who developed severe ROP in the sildenafil-exposed vs nonexposed groups (17/81 (21%) vs 38/243 (16%), P=0.27). On adjusted analysis, there was no difference in severe ROP in the sildenafil-exposed vs nonexposed infants (odds ratio=1.46, 95% confidence interval=0.76 to 2.82, P=0.26). CONCLUSION: We did not observe an association between risk of severe ROP and sildenafil exposure before first eye exam in this cohort of premature infants.
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