The study analyses the incidence of the retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) and its correlation with the most important risk factors in nconates with gestational age (GE) 32 weeks and/or with birth weight (BV) ≤ 1500 g. The cohort of our study is composed by 305 preterms with Mean GE of 29.8 weeks and Mean BW of 1312 g, studied at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of the University of Parma during January 1993 - December 1999. The incidence of ROP resulted 19.7% in our group and was inversely proportional to the GE and BW. No preterms with 32 weeks presented retinopathy, while there has been an incidence of the 65% in the subjects with GE lower than 26 weeks. The most severe grade of ROP was mainly seen in the newborns with the lowest GE (31%), whilst only the 1.5% of the preterms with GE of 30-31 weeks developed ROP of stage 3 or 3+. Similar results were seen when the data were compared with the birth weight. However a direct relation was seen with the duration of the O, therapy and with the typical pathologies of the prematurity, namely respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) and intraventricular haemorrhages (IVH). Among the other risk factors evaluated, the blood transfusion was the most relevant.
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