Neonatal cardiorespiratory physiology
Understanding the hearts and lungs of premature babies
The immature hearts and lungs of premature babies sometimes struggle to meet the demands of gas exchange after birth. These problems may result in the development of disorders such as bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) which is a chronic lung disease in premature babies. BPD may result in lifelong difficulties with breathing. Understanding the factors contributing to poor lung and heart function in premature babies and finding better ways to prevent heart and lung disease is vital to improving the long-term outcomes of premature infants.
- Approximately 40% of babies born more than 12 weeks early develop bronchopulmonary dysplasia. 1, 2
- 15–25 % of babies with bronchopulmonary dysplasia also have pulmonary hypertension (high blood pressure in the lung circulation). 3
- Recent evidence suggests children born premature and diagnosed with bronchopulmonary dysplasia have gradual decline of lung function during childhood. 4
Preterm Infant Functional and Clinical Outcomes study
This UWA study collects health data on preterm babies to better understand bronchopulmonary dysplasia disease.Read more
Enteral Vitamin A for improving Respiratory Outcomes (EVARO) study
Using vitamin A to decrease the risk of chronic lung disease in premature babiesRead more
Our group collaborates with several local, interstate, and international clinicians and scientists to develop better methods of measuring and treating disorders of heart and lung function in premature babies.