Cerebral oxygen saturation during the first 72h after birth in infants diagnosed prenatally with congenital heart disease

Mirthe J Mebius*, Michelle E van der Laan, Elise A Verhagen, Marcel Roofthooft, Arend F Bos, Elisabeth Mw Kooi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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BACKGROUND: Evidence suggests that hypoxic-ischemic brain injury in infants with congenital heart disease already occurs during early life. The aim of our study was, therefore, to assess the course of regional cerebral oxygen saturation (rcSO2) and fractional tissue oxygen extraction (FTOE) during the first 72h after birth in infants with prenatally diagnosed duct-dependent congenital heart disease. In addition, we identified clinical parameters that were associated with rcSO2.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We included 56 infants with duct-dependent congenital heart disease. We measured arterial oxygen saturation (SpO2) and rcSO2 during the first 72h after birth. Simultaneously, we calculated FTOE.

RESULTS: We observed median rcSO2 values of approximately 60%, a decreasing FTOE from 0.34 on day 1 to 0.28 on day 3 and stable preductal SpO2 values around 90%. Several clinical variables were associated with rcSO2. In a multiple linear regression model only type of CHD and preductal SpO2 were significant predictors of rcSO2 during the first three days after birth. Infants with a duct-dependent pulmonary circulation had up to 12% lower rcSO2 values than infants with a duct-dependent systemic circulation.

CONCLUSION: We demonstrated that, during the first three days after birth, cerebral oxygen saturation is low in infants with duct-dependent congenital heart disease. Furthermore, this study provides preoperative reference values of rcSO2 and FTOE in infants with duct-dependent CHD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-203
Number of pages5
JournalEarly Human Development
Publication statusPublished - Dec-2016


  • Congenital heart disease
  • Near-infrared spectroscopy
  • Systemic circulation
  • Pulmonary circulation
  • Newbom infants
  • Neonatal intensive care unit

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