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J Pediatr. 2008 Aug;153(2):183-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2008.01.031. Epub 2008 Mar 19.

Increased indomethacin dosing for persistent patent ductus arteriosus in preterm infants: a multicenter, randomized, controlled trial.

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Cardiovascular Research Institute and Department of Pediatrics, University of California, San Francisco, California 94143-0544, USA.



We conducted a multicenter, randomized, controlled trial to determine whether higher doses of indomethacin would improve the rate of patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) closure.


Infants (<28 weeks gestation) who received a conventional, prophylactic 3-dose course of indomethacin were eligible if they had continued evidence of persistent ductus patency on an echocardiogram obtained before the third prophylactic indomethacin dose. Infants (n = 105) were randomized to receive an extended 3-day course of either low-dose (0.1 mg/kg/d) or higher-dose (0.2 or 0.5 mg/kg/d) indomethacin. An echocardiogram was obtained 24 hours after the last dose of study drug.


Despite increasing serum indomethacin concentrations by 2.9-fold in the higher-dose group, we failed to detect a significant decrease in the rate of persistent PDA (low = 52%; higher = 45%, P = .50). The higher-dose group had a significantly higher occurrence of serum creatinine >2 mg/100 mL (low = 6%, higher = 19%, P < .05) and moderate/severe retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) (low = 15%, higher = 36%, P < .025). The incidence of moderate/severe ROP was directly related to the poststudy indomethacin concentrations (odds ratio = 1.75, confidence interval: 1.15-2.68, P < .01).


Increasing indomethacin concentrations above the levels achieved with a conventional dosing regimen had little effect on the rate of PDA closure but was associated with higher rates of moderate/severe ROP and renal compromise.

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