OBJECTIVE: To assess the current practice preferences in diagnosis and management of persistent hypertension of the newborn (PPHN) of neonatologists or pediatricians with expertise in neonatal care.
STUDY DESIGN: Investigators identified potential participants worldwide through a literature search. They were emailed the URL of an online 25-item questionnaire through the web survey site SurveyMonkey®. Additional respondents were also acquired through a professional online discussion group. The survey was conducted during July - September 2015.
RESULTS: Overall, there were 200 respondents from 51 different countries. Of these, the average 2014 mortality rate of the 90 respondents who completed this section of the questionnaire was 8.3% (interquartile range (IQR): 0-20.3). Echocardiography together with pre-to-post ductal oxygen pulse oximetry (SpO2 ) gradient was the most common PPHN diagnostic method. The most frequent first-line pulmonary vasodilator was inhaled nitric oxide (155/199, 77.9%). Oral sildenafil was most commonly used as second-line adjunctive therapy by 46.3% (81/175). Dopamine (139/198, 70.2%) was chosen to be the initial inotropic agent and normal saline (191/199, 96.0%) was the preferred initial fluid resuscitation for hypotension. Sedation and analgesia were routinely used for PPHN treatment. Twenty-one percent (42/199) of respondents also used muscle relaxants to control respiratory distress. The most commonly used targets for partial pressure of oxygen, partial pressure of carbon dioxide, SpO2 and hemoglobin were 71–80 mmHg (60/197, 30.4%), 36–45 mmHg (100/199, 50.2%), 91–95% (111/199, 55.8%), and 13–15 gm/dL (156/196, 79.6%), respectively.
CONCLUSIONS: This survey shows that the management of PPHN varies widely around the world. The major PPHN diagnostic method is echocardiography together with bedside SpO2 monitoring. The study numbers show the main differences are between developed and developing countries. Further studies exploring evidence-based principles of diagnosis and management in PPHN are warranted.
Select this result for bulk action An international survey on persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn: A need for an evidence-based management