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Pediatrics. 2006 May;117(5):1626-31.

Prolonged indomethacin exposure is associated with decreased white matter injury detected with magnetic resonance imaging in premature newborns at 24 to 28 weeks' gestation at birth.

Author information

  • 1Department of Neurology, University of California, San Francisco, California, USA. millerst@neuropeds.ucsf.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Newborns delivered before 28 weeks' gestation commonly have white matter lesions on MRI that are associated with adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes. Our objective was to determine the risk factors for MRI-detectable white matter injury in infants delivered before 28 weeks' gestation who were treated with prophylactic indomethacin.

METHODS:

This was a prospective cohort study conducted at the intensive care nursery at University of California San Francisco Children's Hospital. Patients included 57 premature newborns between 24 and 27 (+6 days) weeks' gestation at birth (October 1998 to October 2004). We identified perinatal and neonatal risk factors associated with moderate-severe "white matter injuries" (T1 signal abnormalities >2 mm or >3 areas of T1 abnormality) and moderate-severe "brain abnormality" (moderate-severe white matter injuries, any degree of ventriculomegaly, or severe intraventricular hemorrhage) on MRI. Infants were studied with MRI at 31.1 weeks' postmenstrual age (median).

RESULTS:

Moderate-severe white matter injuries were detected in 12 (21%) of 53 preterm newborns, and 20 (35%) of 57 had moderate-severe brain abnormality. Prolonged indomethacin exposure was the only risk factor independently associated with a lower risk of white matter injury or brain abnormality, even when adjusting for the presence of a hemodynamically significant PDA, gestational age at birth, prenatal betamethasone, systemic infection, and days of mechanical ventilation.

CONCLUSIONS:

In this observational study, a longer duration of indomethacin exposure was associated with less white matter injury in infants delivered before 28 weeks' gestation. A randomized trial of prolonged indomethacin treatment is needed to determine whether indomethacin can decrease white matter injury and neurodevelopmental abnormalities.

PMID:
16651316
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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