Items in AFP with MESH term: Infant, Premature
Outpatient Care of the Premature Infant - Article
ABSTRACT: An increasing number of infants in the United States are born prematurely, with current statistics estimating about 13 percent of all births. Although survival rates and outcomes for premature infants have dramatically improved in recent decades, morbidity and mortality are still significant. Infants born prematurely are at increased risk of growth problems, developmental delays, and complex medical problems. To account for prematurity, growth and development monitoring should be done according to adjusted age (age in months from term due date). Premature infants should gain 20 to 30 g (0.71 to 1.06 oz) per day after discharge from the hospital. Growth parameters may be improved in the short term with the use of enriched preterm formula or breast milk fortifier. Each well-child examination should include developmental surveillance so that early intervention can be initiated if a developmental delay is diagnosed. Routine vaccination should proceed according to chronologic age with minor exceptions, and respiratory syncytial virus immune globulin is indicated in preterm infants who meet the criteria.
Risks and Benefits of Pacifiers - Article
ABSTRACT: Physicians are often asked for guidance about pacifier use in children, especially regarding the benefits and risks, and when to appropriately wean a child. The benefits of pacifier use include analgesic effects, shorter hospital stays for preterm infants, and a reduction in the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. Pacifiers have been studied and recommended for pain relief in newborns and infants undergoing common, minor procedures in the emergency department (e.g., heel sticks, immunizations, venipuncture). The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents consider offering pacifiers to infants one month and older at the onset of sleep to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. Potential complications of pacifier use, particularly with prolonged use, include a negative effect on breastfeeding, dental malocclusion, and otitis media. Adverse dental effects can be evident after two years of age, but mainly after four years. The American Academy of Family Physicians recommends that mothers be educated about pacifier use in the immediate postpartum period to avoid difficulties with breastfeeding. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Family Physicians recommend weaning children from pacifiers in the second six months of life to prevent otitis media. Pacifier use should not be actively discouraged and may be especially beneficial in the first six months of life.
Umbilical Cord Clamping in Preterm Infants - Cochrane for Clinicians
ABSTRACT: When monitoring growth and development in the premature infant, physicians should make adjustments for the estimated due date. With minor exceptions, administration of immunizations is based on the chronologic age. Administration of hepatitis B vaccine should be delayed until the infant weighs 2,000 g (4 lb, 5 oz). Administration of influenza vaccine should be considered in infants with chronic medical problems, and the pneumococcal vaccine may be beneficial at age two in children with chronic problems, especially pulmonary disease. Premature infants should also be monitored to assure appropriate nutrition. Breast-fed infants should probably receive vitamin supplements during the first year. Supplemental iron should be initiated at two weeks to two months after birth and continued for 12 to 15 months. Office care includes screening for problems that occur more frequently in premature infants, especially vision and hearing problems. Because many of these infants require care from multiple medical disciplines, coordination of care is another important role for the family physician. The goals of this care are to promote normal growth and development and minimize morbidity and mortality.
ABSTRACT: Medical problems associated with prematurity are frequently complex, and a multidisciplinary approach is often required. Some common problems include the following: (1) anemia, which can be reduced by iron supplementation, (2) cerebral palsy or mental retardation as a result of intraventricular hemorrhage or periventricular leukomalacia, (3) respiratory problems, including bronchopulmonary dysplasia and apnea, (4) visual problems, such as those associated with retinopathy of prematurity, (5) gastroesophageal reflux and (6) surgical problems, including inguinal or umbilical hernia and cryptorchidism. Monitoring of growth and development includes recording the infant's head circumference, weight and length on a growth chart for premature infants. Nutritional status should be assessed at each visit, watching for hyperosmolar problems in infants receiving high-calorie formulas. Consultation with other specialists may be required if abnormalities are identified during follow-up care in the office.
The Eye in Childhood - Article
ABSTRACT: Normal visual development is rapid during the first six months of life and continues through the first decade. Young children are uniquely sensitive to conditions that interfere with vision and visual development. Amblyopia, or functionally defective development of the central visual system, may be caused by common vision problems such as strabismus, uncorrected refractive errors and deprivation secondary to occlusion. Prematurity is especially associated with eye pathology, including retinopathy of prematurity, amblyopia, strabismus and refractive errors. When detected early, amblyopia and many other childhood vision abnormalities are treatable, but the potential for correction and normal visual development is inversely related to age. Since many affected children are asymptomatic, early detection of abnormal visual function requires effective screening throughout early childhood. Special considerations apply to screening examinations of children born prematurely.
Neonatal Resuscitation: An Update - Article
ABSTRACT: Appropriate resuscitation must be available for each of the more than 4 million infants born annually in the United States. Ninety percent of infants transition safely, and it is up to the physician to assess risk factors, identify the nearly 10 percent of infants who need resuscitation, and respond appropriately. A team or persons trained in neonatal resuscitation should be promptly available to provide resuscitation. The Neonatal Resuscitation Program, which was initiated in 1987 to identify infants at risk of needing resuscitation and provide high-quality resuscitation, underwent major updates in 2006 and 2010. Among the most important changes are to not intervene with endotracheal suctioning in vigorous infants born through meconium-stained amniotic fluid (although endotracheal suctioning may be appropriate in nonvigorous infants); to provide positive pressure ventilation with one of three devices when necessary; to begin resuscitation of term infants using room air or blended oxygen; and to have a pulse oximeter readily available in the delivery room. The updated guidelines also provide indications for chest compressions and for the use of intravenous epinephrine, which is the preferred route of administration, and recommend not to use sodium bicarbonate or naloxone during resuscitation. Other recommendations include confirming endotracheal tube placement using an exhaled carbon dioxide detector; using less than 100 percent oxygen and adequate thermal support to resuscitate preterm infants; and using therapeutic hypothermia for infants born at 36 weeks’ gestation or later with moderate to severe hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy.