OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the relationship between superior vena cava flow (SVCF) measurements within the first 24 h of life, and development of intraventricular haemorrhage (IVH) in extremely preterm infants.
STUDY DESIGN: Single centre retrospective cohort study of 108 preterm infants born less than 28 weeks' gestation. Main outcome measure was degree of IVH at day 7 postnatal age.
RESULTS: The mean GA of the study group was 25.4 weeks. Mean SVCF was lower (75 ml/kg/min) in infants later diagnosed with IVH (n = 46) compared to infants, who did not develop IVH (87.7 ml/kg/min, p = 0.055). PDA diameter was inversely associated with SVCF (p = 0.024) and reversal of flow in the descending aorta (p = 0.001). Sensitivity analysis did not confirm an independent association of SVCF with development of IVH [OR 0.990 (0.978-1.002), p = 0.115].
CONCLUSION: Our study describes early SVCF in extremely preterm infants is associated with the extent of ductal shunting, but insensitive in predicting IVH.