High-frequency oscillation in the rescue of infants with persistent pulmonary hypertension
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High-frequency oscillatory ventilation (HFOV) was used to treat 41 infants with persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN). Of the 37 patients who showed early improvement on HFOV, three died. The remaining 34 patients demonstrated, within one hour of the switchover to HFOV, a rise in mean arterial/alveolar oxygen tension ratio (PaO2/PaO2) from 0.093 +/- 0.041 (SD) to 0.132 +/- 0.051 (p less than .001), and a fall in mean PaCO2 from 42 +/- 10 to 34 +/- torr 9 (p less than .01). Mean airway pressure (Paw) fell significantly (p less than .01) within 12 h. The mean duration of conventional mechanical ventilation before starting HFOV was longer in 13 patients who developed bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) than in 21 non-BPD patients (44.7 +/- 32.3 vs. 19.1 +/- 15.6 h, p less than .002), as was the duration of exposure to Paw greater than 15 cm H2O during that treatment mode (31.8 +/- 21.3 vs. 9.5 +/- 6.0 h, p less than .001). HFOV is often effective in the treatment of patients with PPHN, and early initiation of this type of mechanical ventilation may be associated with a reduced incidence of BPD.
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