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Indian J Chest Dis Allied Sci. 2005 Oct-Dec;47(4):245-9.

Experience with inhaled nitric oxide therapy in hypoxic respiratory failure of the newborn.

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Department of Newborn Care, Liverpool Hospital, Sydney, Australia.



Respiratory diseases are the commonest cause of morbidity and mortality in newborns. Inhaled nitric oxide (iNO) has been shown to be effective in the management of persistent pulmonory hypertension of newborn (PPHN).


To retrospectively analyse data to determine the effectiveness of inhaled nitric oxide (iNO) in the management of newborns with PPHN in terms of survival and changes in oxygenation status.


Neo-natal data since inception of iNO therapy at the unit (past six years) was reviewed. Pertinent demographic and clinical information was collected from medical records of newborns that received inhaled nitric oxide therapy during their stay. Details of underlying illnesses, other therapeutic modalities, arterial blood gas, ventilatory and nitric oxide parameters were assessed and analysed to ascertain efficacy of iNO.


A total of 36 babies (gestational age ranging from 24-41 weeks) received iNO during this period; two were excluded from final analysis. Overall survival rate was 80 percent. There was a statistically significant increase in systemic oxygenation (PaO2) from 41.1 +/- 2.1 mmHg to 128.5 +/- 13.2 mmHg and a decline in oxygenation index (OI) from 49.4 +/- 5.9 to 17.3 +/- 2.5, when assessed after four hours (P < 0.001). Mean duration of iNO therapy was 63 +/- 7.3 hours and the maximum methaemoglobin levels were noted to be 2.1 percent.


Inhaled nitric oxide appears to be an effective rescue therapy for the management of PPHN associated with hypoxic respiratory failure. It is safe and well tolerated with no evidence of clinical or biochemical side effects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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