Prevalence of and risk factors for retinopathy of prematurity in a cohort of preterm infants treated exclusively with non-invasive ventilation in the first week after birth

Van der Merwe, S. K. ; Freeman, N. ; Bekker, A. ; Harvey, J. ; Smith, J. (2013-01-14)

CITATION: Van der Merwe, S. K. et al. 2013. Prevalence of and risk factors for retinopathy of prematurity in a cohort of preterm infants treated exclusively with non-invasive ventilation in the first week after birth. South African Medical Journal, 103(2):96-101, doi:10.7196/SAMJ.6131.

The original publication is available at http://www.samj.org.za

Article

Objectives. To determine the current prevalence of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) in premature babies treated with non-invasive ventilation at Tygerberg Children’s Hospital, Parow, Cape Town, South Africa, and to identify risk factors associated with the development of ROP. Methods. A retrospective medical records review of infants screened for ROP during a 2-year period (January 2009 - December 2010). Infants who did not receive invasive ventilation during the first week of life were included. Twenty-four previously reported risk factors for the development of ROP were identified for use in a multivariate logistic regression (MLR) analysis. Results. A total of 356 patients were included. The overall prevalence of ROP was 21.8% and that of clinically significant ROP (CSROP) 4.4%. The risk factors with a statistically significant association with the development of ROP on MLR analysis were severe apnoea (p=0.0005) and decreasing birth weight (p=0.0382). Conclusions. There is a low prevalence of ROP in the cohort of preterm infants treated exclusively with non-invasive ventilation in the first week of life. The risk factors of importance in our population were severe apnoea and lower birth weight. Birth weight is a practical and reproducible variable that can be used to aid development of ROP screening criteria.

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