PLoS ONE (Jan 2021)

Can lung ultrasound score accurately predict the need for surfactant  replacement in preterm neonates? A systematic review and meta-analysis protocol.

  • Letizia Capasso,
  • Daniela Pacella,
  • Fiorella Migliaro,
  • Daniele De Luca,
  • Francesco Raimondi

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 16, no. 7
p. e0255332


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Respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in preterm infants due to primary surfactant deficiency. Surfactant replacement has greatly improved the short and long term prognosis of RDS but its administration criteria remain uncertain. Lung ultrasound has been recently shown as a non-invasive, repeatable, bedside tool to estimate parenchymal aeration using a semiquantitative score (LUS). The objective of this systematic review and meta-analysis is to evaluate the accuracy of LUS, assessed on the first day of life, to predict surfactant replacement. Methods will follow the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis Protocols (PRISMA-P) guidelines and the protocol has been registered in PROSPERO database (registration number: CRD42021247888). Primary outcome: in a population of preterm infants, LUS will be compared in neonates who received surfactant replacement versus those who did not. Secondary outcome will be the accuracy of lung ultrasound score to predict the need for ≥ 2 doses of surfactant.