Clinical characteristics, diagnosis and management outcome of respiratory distress syndrome in term and near-term neonates


Sara Mohyeldin
Husam Salama
Safaa Ali


term newborn, respiratory distress syndrome, surfactant, RDS,


Surfactant deficiency respiratory distress syndrome (SRDS) virtually occurs in preterm neonates. However, SRDS uncommonly may occur in term and near-term neonates.


This study aims to describe the clinical characteristics of SRDS in term and late preterm neonates.


This is a retrospective chart review of full-term and late preterm neonates born older than 35 to 41 weeks gestation age diagnosed with SRDS. The diagnosis was based on clinical & radiological manifestations of SRDS.


1547 neonates were admitted during this period to NICU with a diagnosis of increased work of breathing for further management. 117 cases of term and near-term neonates (mean GA = 36.8 wks.) had a confirmed diagnosis of Surfactant deficiency SRDS. Who compared 60 preterm neonates with SRDS less than 35 weeks gestation (mean GA 27.5 wks) as a control. The mean birth weight was 2.8 kg vs 1.1 kg in the preterm group. SRDS occurs more among the male gender (58%), with CS in 78.6 % of all diagnosed cases. No apparent cause was found in 37.7 %. In comparison, 37.6% of all patients were born to mothers with diabetes mellitus, and 27% were born to mothers with either GBs infection, maternal chorioamnionitis, or prolonged rupture of the membrane.


SRDS is not uncommon among full-term and near-term neonates (10/1000 live birth). The most common causes are maternal diabetes mellitus and cesarean section. It affects males more than females. Most cases will run a mild-to-moderate course that responds to non-invasive ventilation.


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