Use of early nasal continuous positive airway pressure in preterm neonates with hyaline membrane disease (neonatal respiratory distress syndrome)


  • R. D. M. Sneha Reddy Department of Pediatrics, GITAM Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India
  • Seshagiri Koripadu Department of Pediatrics, GITAM Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India
  • Harischandra Venkata Yanamandala Department of Pediatrics, GITAM Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India



Respiratory distress syndrome, Preterm neonates, Hyaline membrane disease, Nasal CPAP


Background: In developing countries like ours, there is high burden of prematurity and sub-optimal use of antenatal steroid administration resulting infrequent hyaline membrane disease (HMD).

Methods: A total 50 cases of clinically diagnosed HMD with gestational age between 28-34 weeks admitted to neonatal intensive care unit (ICU). 50 babies were treated with early nasal continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) (within 6 hours of onset of respiratory distress).

Results: Incidence of prematurity was 12.42%. Incidence of HMD observed between gestational ages of 28-34 weeks is 3.2%. Out of total 50 babies who were managed with early nasal CPAP, it proved effective in 40 babies (80%), remaining 10 babies (20%) had to be intubated and required ventilation. Out of 10 babies who required ventilation 90% of the babies were less than 32 weeks gestation age; remaining 10% were between 33-34 weeks. Analysis of these results showed that outcome is better with increased gestational age (p<0.005). Out of 10 babies who failed 80% were <1500 g and remaining 20% above 1500 g. We found significant improvement (p<0.005) in SA score after application of nasal CPAP. Babies on CPAP had significant improvement in oxygenation (p<0.05). A success rate of 93.1% observed in moderate grade HMD (p<0.005). Out of 10 babies who failed on nasal CPAP, 80% of them had severe grade HMD and 20% showed moderate HMD. A success rate of 92.86% was found in babies of mothers who had received antenatal steroids and 63.63% of babies whose mothers had not received antenatal steroids improved with early nasal CPAP (p<0.05).

Conclusions: Nasal CPAP is found to be effective in babies of mothers who had received antenatal steroids. Nasal CPAP is safe, inexpensive and effective means of respiratory support in HMD. Use of early nasal CPAP which is simple, non-invasive, has low capital outlay and does not require expertise, is the option for us where most places cannot provide invasive ventilation.


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Original Research Articles