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It is not the ride: inter-hospital transport is not an independent risk factor for intraventricular hemorrhage among very low birth weight infants

A Watson, B Saville, Z Lu, W Walsh
Journal of Perinatology: Official Journal of the California Perinatal Association 2013, 33 (5): 366-70

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relationship between intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH), inter-hospital transport and known potential risk factors for IVH.

STUDY DESIGN: Very low birth weight (VLBW <1500 g) infants admitted to a large regional neonatal intensive care unit within 48 h of life from 2005 to 2010 were identified. Logistic regression and proportional odds logistic regression models were used to compare inborn versus outborn patients with respect to IVH (any vs none) and IVH grade, respectively. Logistic regression was used to quantify the association between outborn status and mortality.

RESULT: A total of 758 infants were included in the study (inborn=568, outborn=190). Outborn infants were found to have greater IVH severity than inborn (odds ratio (OR): 1.52; P=0.012). After accounting for 20 clinical and demographic variables in a multivariable model, the association between outborn status and IVH lacked statistical significance (OR: 1.14; P=0.56). Significant predictors of IVH grade included vaginal delivery (OR: 2.16; P<0.001), patent ductus arteriosus (OR: 1.65; P=0.005), 5-min Apgar (OR: 0.85; P=0.005) and gestational age (OR: 0.98; P=0.012). Sixty-nine (9.1%) of the infants died. After adjusting for potential confounders, the relationship between mortality and outborn status was not significant (OR:1.26; P=0.516). Significant predictors of mortality included gestational age (OR: 1.03; P=0.04) and 5-min Apgar (OR:1.22; P=0.02).

CONCLUSION: Although VLBW infants transported during the first 2 days of life have higher rates of IVH than infants born at a tertiary care facility, this relationship may be explained by associations with underlying clinical variables rather than transport itself.

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