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Rodriguez-Fanjul J, Jordan I, Balaguer M, Batista-Muñoz A, Ramon M, Bobillo-Perez S. Early surfactant replacement guided by lung ultrasound in preterm newborns with RDS: the ULTRASURF randomised controlled trial [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jul 24]. Eur J Pediatr. 2020;1-8. doi:10.1007/s00431-020-03744-y

This study aimed to investigate whether using lung ultrasound (LUS) scores in premature newborns with respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) allows for earlier surfactant therapy (within the first 3 h of life) than using FiO2 criteria. This was a randomised, non-blinded clinical trial conducted in a neonatal intensive care unit. The inclusion criteria were newborns with a gestational age of ≤ 32 weeks and RDS. Patients meeting the inclusion criteria were randomly assigned to two groups: the ultrasound group, administered surfactant based on LUS score and/or FiO2 threshold, and the control group, guided by FiO2 only. Fifty-six patients were included. The ultrasound group received surfactant earlier (1 h of life vs. 6 h, p < 0.001), with lower FiO2 (25% vs. 30%, p = 0.016) and lower CO2 (48 vs. 54, p = 0.011). After surfactant treatment, newborns in the ultrasound group presented a greater SpO2 (p = 0.001) and SpO2/FiO2 ratio (p = 0.012).Conclusions: LUS score allowed an earlier surfactant therapy, reduced oxygen exposure early in life and a better oxygenation after the treatment. This early surfactant replacement may lead to reduced oxygen exposure. What is Known: • Lung ultrasound scores predict the need for surfactant therapy in premature newborns. What is New: • This study shows that using lung ultrasound scores improves the timeliness of surfactant replacement compared with using FiO2 alone.

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