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Pneumothorax in the Neonate: Assessment and Diagnosis

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PNEUMOTHORAX OCCURS MORE often in the neonatal period than at any other time of life.1 It can happen spontaneously, secondary to mechanical ventilation, as a complication following certain procedures, or as a result of pneumonia or aspiration.2 The frequency of spontaneous pneumothorax is approximately 1 percent of all live births.1 Horbar and colleagues reported data on 118,448 very low birth weight newborns (410–1,500 gm) followed through the Vermont Oxford Network from 1991 to 1999. They documented an increasing risk for pneumothorax with time. Rates of pneumothorax for neonates with birth weights of 501–750 gm were as high as 14 percent in 1999.3 The following case study summarizes the course of a neonate with a recurrent tension pneumothorax.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2005

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