- by Medikoe Health Expert
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- Feb 09 2017
Infant respiratory distress syndrome
Infant respiratory distress syndrome (IRDS), also called neonatal respiratory distress syndrom respiratory distress syndrome of newborn, or increasingly surfactant deficiency disorder (SDD),
and previously called hyaline membrane disease (HMD), is a syndrome in premature infants caused by developmental insufficiency of surfactant production and structural immaturity in the lungs. It can also be a consequence of neonatal infection.
It can also result from a genetic problem with the production of surfactant associated proteins. IRDS affects about 1% of newborn infants and is the leading cause of death in preterm infants.
The incidence decreases with advancing gestational age, from about 50% in babies born at 26–28 weeks, to about 25% at 30–31 weeks. The syndrome is more frequent in infants of diabetic mothers and in the second born of premature twins.
IRDS is distinct from pulmonary hypoplasia, another leading cause of neonatal death that involves respiratory distress.
IRDS begins shortly after birth and is manifest by fast breathing, a fast heart rate, chest wall retractions (recession), expiratory grunting, nasal flaring and blue discoloration of the skin during breathing efforts.
As the disease progresses, the baby may develop ventilatory failure (rising carbon dioxide concentrations in the blood), and prolonged cessations of breathing ("apnea").
Whether treated or not, the clinical course for the acute disease lasts about 2 to 3 days. During the first day the patient worsens and requires more support. During the second day the baby may be remarkably stable on adequate support and resolution is noted during the third day, heralded by a prompt diuresis. Despite huge advances in care, IRDS remains the most common single cause of death in the first month of life in the developed world. Complications include metabolic disorders (acidosis, low blood sugar), patent ductus arteriosus, low blood pressure, chronic lung changes, and bleeding in the brain. The disease is frequently complicated by prematurity and its additional defects in other organ function.
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