Can first trimester pregnancy-associated plasma protein-A predict the surfactant needs of preterm neonates?

Abstract: BACKGROUND: Low values of pregnancy associated plasma protein A (PAPP-A), have been shown to be associated with some poor gestational outcomes, especially those related to placental deficiency such as pre-eclampsia and fetal growth restriction as well as preterm labor. The aim of this study was to compare first trimester PAPP-A MoM values with the surfactant needs of newborns of pregnant women who had a preterm delivery. METHODS: This study included 216 pregnant women who had a preterm delivery, who were found to be in the low-risk group based on their aneuploidy screening. The women were separated into two groups based on the surfactant receipts of their newborns. A record was made of the obstetric history, birth characteristics of the preterm infants, and whether or not there was a need for surfactant. RESULTS: A comparison of the PAPP-A values of the two groups revealed that the group that received surfactant had statistically significantly lower PAPP-A values (t(–3.97) = 0.203, p < 0.001). When the cut-off value of PAPP-A was taken as 1 MoM and the gestational age was analyzed together with the birth weight, PAPP-A alone was found to be a significant independent variable for the prediction of respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) (p = 0.031; OR:8.2 (1.2–55.6)). CONCLUSIONS: The result of this study demonstrated that PAPP-A MoM values may be significant in predicting the need for surfactant in RDS, which is a frequently seen condition in the neonatal period.

*Corresponding Author: 

B. Yakistiran, MD, Ministry of Health Ankara Bilkent City Hospital, Ankara, Turkey. E-mail: