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Neuroprotection Care Bundle Implementation to Decrease Acute Brain Injury in Preterm Infants

      Abstract

      Background

      We assessed the impact of an evidence-based neuroprotection care bundle on the risk of brain injury in extremely preterm infants.

      Methods

      We implemented a neuroprotection care bundle consisting of a combination of neuroprotection interventions such as minimal handling, midline head position, deferred cord clamping, and protocolization of hemodynamic and respiratory managements. These interventions targeted risk factors for acute brain injury in extremely preterm infants (born at gestational age less than 29 weeks) during the first three days of birth. Implementation occurred in a stepwise manner, including care bundle development by a multidisciplinary care team based on previous evidence and experience, standardization of outcome assessment tools, and education. We compared the incidence of the composite outcome of acute preterm brain injury or death preimplementation and postimplementation.

      Results

      Neuroprotection care bundle implementation associated with a significant reduction in acute brain injury risk factors such as the use of inotropes (24% before, 7% after, P value < 0.001) and fluid boluses (37% before, 19% after, P value < 0.001), pneumothorax (5% before, 2% after, P value = 0.002), and opioid use (19% before, 7% after, P value < 0.001). Adjusting for confounding factors, the neuroprotection care bundle significantly reduced death or severe brain injury (adjusted odds ratio, 0.34; 95% confidence interval, 0.20 to 0.59; P value < 0.001) and severe brain injury (adjusted odds ratio, 0.31; 95% confidence interval, 0.17 to 0.58; P < 0.001).

      Conclusions

      Implementation of neuroprotection care bundle targeting predefined risk factors is feasible and effective in reducing acute brain injury in extremely preterm infants.

      Keywords

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