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Acta Paediatr. 2000 Dec;89(12):1449-55.

Budesonide delivered by dosimetric jet nebulization to preterm very low birthweight infants at high risk for development of chronic lung disease.

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Department of Neonatology, Astrid Lindgren's Children's Hospital, Karolinska Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden.


We investigated the effect of an aerosolized corticosteroid (budesonide) on the oxygen requirement of infants at high risk for developing chronic lung disease (CLD) in a randomized, double-blind study. The study objective was to attain a 30% decrease in FiO2 levels in the budesonide treatment group after 14 d of therapy. Thirty very low birthweight (VLBW) infants (median (range)) gestational age 26 wk (23-29) and birthweight 805 g (525-1227) were randomized. Inclusion criteria were mechanical ventilation on day 6 of life, or if extubated on nasal continuous positive airway pressure with FiO2 > or = 0.3. The budesonide (Pulmicort) dose was 500 microg bid, or placebo. The aerosol was delivered with a dosimetric jet nebulizer, with variable inspiratory time and breath sensitivity. Inhalations were started on day 7 of life. Twenty-seven patients completed the study. A significant lowering of the FiO2 levels at 21 d of life was not detected. Infants who received budesonide were more often extubated during the study period (7/8 vs 2/9) and had a greater relative change from baseline in their oxygenation index (budesonide decreased 26% vs placebo increased 60%). Subsequent use of intravenous dexamethasone or inhaled budesonide in the treatment group was significantly less. All patients required O2 supplementation on day 28 of life. At 36 wk postconceptual age, 61% of infants in the budesonide group needed supplemental O2 as opposed to 79% in the placebo group. No side effects on growth or adrenal function were observed.


We conclude that inhaled budesonide aerosol via dosimetric jet nebulizer started on day 7 of life for infants at high risk for developing CLD decreases the need for mechanical ventilation similar to intravenous dexamethasone, but without significant side effects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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