Research: Ductus arteriosus flow predicts outcome in neonates with congecsion

Pediatr Pulmonol

. 2023 Mar 15.

 doi: 10.1002/ppul.26385. Online ahead of print.

Ductus arteriosus flow predicts outcome in neonates with congecsion

Bartolomeo Bo 1Flaminia Pugnaloni 2Amelia Licari 3Neil Patel 4Brigitte Strizek 5Lotte Lemloh 1Judith Leyens 1Andreas Mueller 1 6Florian Kipfmueller 1 6

Affiliations expand


Objective: To investigate whether the pattern of flow through the ductus arteriosus (DA) is associated with the need for extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support (ECMO) or death in neonates with congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH).

Design: Retrospective observational study.

Setting: German level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Participants: One hundred and nine CDH neonates were born between March 2009 and May 2021.

Methods: DA flow pattern was assessed in echocardiograms obtained within 24 h of life by measuring flow time and velocity time integral (VTI) for both left-to-right (LR) and right-to-left (RL) components of the ductal shunt. A VTI ratio (VTILR/VTIRL) < 1.0 and an RL relative flow time (flow timeRL/(Flow timeLR+Flow timeRL)) >33% were defined as markers of abnormal flow patterns. The primary outcome was the need for ECMO. The secondary outcome was death.

Results: Seventy-two patients (51.8%) had a VTI ratio <1.0, 73 (52.5%) an RL relative flow time >33%. Fifty-nine patients (42.4%) had an alteration of both values. Need for ECMO was present in 37.4% (n = 52), while 19.4% (n = 27) died. A VTI ratio <1.0 had the highest diagnostic accuracy for the need for ECMO, (sensitivity 82.7%, specificity 66.7%, negative predictive value [NPV] 86.6%, and positive predictive value [PPV] 59.7%) as well as for death (sensitivity 77.8%, specificity 54.5%, NPV 91.0%, and PPV 29.2%). Patients with VTI ratio <1.0 were 4.7 times more likely to need ECMO and 3.3 times more likely to die. VTI ratio values correlated significantly with pulmonary hypertension (PH) severity (r = -0.516, p < 0.001).

Conclusions: A VTI ratio <1.0 is a valuable threshold to identify high-risk CDH neonates. For improved risk stratification, other parameters-for example, left ventricular cardiac dysfunction-should be combined with DA flow assessment.

Keywords: Doppler echocardiography; congenital diaphragmatic hernia; ductus arteriosus; pulmonary hypertension.

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