In order to prevent the worsening of chronic respiratory disease, scientists in Australia have recommended a combination of lung tests for prematurely born babies and children.

Telethon Kids Institute researcher Dr Shannon Simpson says neonatal units do not currently organize respiratory follow-up assessments for premature babies after discharge unless patients have severe respiratory disorders.

“Patients with the lung disease, bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), when they were born often experience poor lung function throughout their lives,” Dr Simpson says.

“These patients may benefit from regular lung function assessments during infancy, childhood and adulthood so further respiratory problems can be prevented before they occur, or their degree of severity lessened if they do occur.”

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