Patent Ductus Arteriosus in the Preterm Infant: Diagnostic and Treatment Options

The incidence of hemodynamically significant patent ductus arteriosus (hsPDA) increases with decreasing gestational age and is associated with many common morbidities of extreme prematurity. Controversies remain surrounding the definition of hsPDA, the population of infants requiring treatment, the appropriate timing and method of treatment, and the outcomes associated with PDA and its therapies.

This integrative literature review focuses on diagnostic and treatment recommendations derived from the highest levels of evidence.

The lack of consensus surrounding the diagnosis and clinical significance of PDA hinders meta-analysis across studies and confounds understanding of appropriate management strategies. Novel biomarkers, pharmaceutical choices, and transcatheter closure methods are expanding diagnostic and treatment options.

Infants weighing less than 1000 g are at highest risk. Prophylactic closure is no longer recommended, although early asymptomatic therapy is still preferred by some to avoid prolonged pulmonary overcirculation or decreased renal and gut perfusion. Conservative treatment measures such as fluid restriction and diuretic administration have not consistently proven effective and are in some instances detrimental. Cyclooxygenase inhibitors are effective but have adverse renal and mesenteric effects. Oral ibuprofen is associated with lower instance of necrotizing enterocolitis.

To access the article abstract please click here

 

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