“A new protocol to treat babies born in withdrawal from drugs can be used widely to improve outcomes for these babies.
The protocol reduces length of stay and the duration of treatment with opioids that are used therapeutically to wean babies off of drugs.
“The incidence of neonatal abstinence syndrome after an infant’s in utero exposure to opioids has risen dramatically in recent years,” says Eric Hall, PhD, a researcher in the Perinatal Institute at Cincinnati Children’s and lead author of the study. “After adoption of the protocol, opioid treatment went from 34 to 23 days, and length of hospital inpatient stay dropped from nearly 32 days to about 24.”
The protocol was developed by the Ohio Children’s Hospital Neonatal Research Consortium, which has members from each of the six Ohio children’s hospitals.
In all, 981 infants were included in the study, which ran from January 2012 to August 2014
The researchers not only found an improvement in length of stay and duration of treatment, but also in adherence to the protocol, which increased from 87.9 percent to 96.7 percent.
The study is published online in the journal Pediatrics.”
Source: MedicalExpress.com – September 14, 2015