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Ann Pediatr Cardiol. 2009 Jul;2(2):120-6. doi: 10.4103/0974-2069.58313.

Role of prophylactic surgical ligation of patent ductus arteriosus in extremely low birth weight infants: Systematic review and implications for clinical practice.

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Departments of Pediatrics, Omm Al-Qura University, Mecca.



To investigate the effectiveness and safety of prophylactic surgical ligation of patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) on mortality and morbidity of preterm infants weighing less than 1000 g at birth.


The study conducted a systematic search of available database from 1996-2008. Retrieved articles were assessed for eligibility and data was abstracted independently by two reviewers. Decisions to include studies for review and the methodological quality of included studies were asssessed in duplicate based on predetermined criteria. No language restrictions were applied.


Only one eligible study that enrolled 84 extremely low birth weight infants was identified. Prophylactic surgical ligation of PDA resulted in a statistically significant reduction of severe stage II or III necrotizing enterocolitis, [RR 0.25, 95% CI (0.08, 0.83), P value 0.02, number needed to treat 5]. The study, however, found no statistically significant difference in mortality, intraventricular hemorrhage, bronchopulmonary dysplasia, and retinopathy of prematurity.


Current evidence does not support the use of prophylactic surgical ligation of PDA in the management of the preterm infants.


Extremely low birth weight infants; patent ductus arteriosus; surgical ligation; systematic review

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