Surfactant deficiency in transient tachypnea of the newborn

Liane Unchalo Machado, Humberto Holmer Fiori, Matteo Baldisserotto, Pedro Celiny Ramos Garcia, Ana Cláudia Garcia Vieira, Renato Machado Fiori
Journal of Pediatrics 2011, 159 (5): 750-4

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate surfactant production and function in term neonates with transient tachypnea of the newborn (TTN).

STUDY DESIGN: Samples of gastric aspirates collected within 30 minutes of birth from 42 term newborns with gestational age ≥ 37 weeks (21 patients with TTN and 21 control subjects), delivered via elective cesarean delivery, were analyzed with lamellar body count and stable microbubble test.

RESULTS: Results of lamellar body counts and stable microbubble tests were significantly lower in the TTN group than in control subjects (P = .004 and .013, respectively). Lamellar body counts were significantly lower in infants with TTN requiring oxygen for ≥ 24 hours after birth than in infants requiring oxygen for < 24 hours (P = .029). When the cutoff point was 48 hours, the stable microbubble count was significantly lower in the group requiring oxygen for ≥ 48 hours than in the group requiring oxygen for < 48 hours (P = .047).

CONCLUSIONS: Term infants with TTN had low lamellar body counts associated with decreased surfactant function, suggesting that prolonged disease is associated with surfactant abnormalities.

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