Allergy Asthma Respir Dis.  2021 Apr;9(2):69-75. 10.4168/aard.2021.9.2.69.

Relationships between lung function and clinical findings in school-age survivors of preterm birth

  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Daegu Catholic University Medical Center, Daegu Catholic University School of Medicine, Daegu, Korea


Survivors of preterm birth are at high risk of chronic pulmonary disease. We examined lung function in the school-age children born preterm and investigated the relationship between lung function and clinical parameters.
Thirty children born preterm were enrolled and divided into 2 groups: 14 very preterm (< 32-week gestational age [GA]) and 16 moderate-to-late preterm (32- to 36-week GA). Pulmonary function tests (PFTs) were performed repeatedly during schoolage and PFT parameters were compared with age-matched controls. The relationship between PFT and clinical parameters was also studied.
PFT parameters in the very preterm group were persistently reduced compared with age-matched controls (P< 0.05). Half of the children had been diagnosed with asthma at the visit for the first PFT. Seventy-seven percent of patients in the very preterm group had bronchial hyperresposiveness. Birth weight, duration of oxygen therapy and mechanical ventilation in the neonatal intensive care unit, and body weight at age 1 were associated with forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV 1), forced vital capacity (FVC), or forced expiratory flow between 25% and 75% of expired vital capacity (FEF 25%–75%) z-scores. Multiple regression analysis revealed that body weight at age 1 was an independent predictor of FEV 1 and FVC z-scores, and duration of oxygen therapy was independently associated with FEF 25%–75% z-scores (P< 0.01 for all).
No catch-up in lung function was observed in school-age children born very preterm. Lower body weight at age 1 might be an independent risk factor for reduced FEV 1 and FVC, whereas long-term oxygen therapy might be associated with reduced FEF 25%–75%


very preterm infant; pulmonary function
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