Lung problems in preemies may persist in young adulthood

August 5, 2008

Babies that survive extreme preterm birth with bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) may be strongly associated with future adult lung problems, as reported in the August European Respiratory Journal.

Babies that survive extreme preterm birth with bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) may be strongly associated with having future adult lung problems, as reported in the August European Respiratory Journal.

Investigators studied 21 participants who were born between 1980 and 1987 with birthweight less than 3 pounds, 5 ounces (1,500 grams), and requiring supplementary oxygen at 36 weeks. In 19 of the subjects, computed tomography was carried out and revelealed abnormal findings in all these individuals. The most common condition was emphysema (84% of participants).

"Young adult survivors of moderate and severe bronchopulmonary dysplasia may be left with residual functional and characteristic structural pulmonary abnormalities, most notably emphysema," the researchers concluded.