Background and Aim To evaluate the association between respiratory tract Ureaplasma urealyticum (Uu) colonization and development of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) requiring treatment.
Methods The infants with birthweight ≤1250 g born in a third level neonatal intensive care unit between March 2009 and May 2010 were prospectively identified. Nasopharyngeal swabs for Uu colonization were taken in postnatal first 3 days. Culture positive patients were reevaluated on the 12th day by nasopharyngeal swabs for Uu. The primary outcome was to define whether there was an association between respiratory tract Uu colonization and severe ROP requiring treatment. Independent samples t-test or Mann whitney U test was used to compare continuous variables and Chi square test or Fisher’s exact test for categorical variables. Multivariate (backward) logistic regression analysis was performed to simultaneously measure the influence of the independent variables with ROP as the dependent variable.
Results Twenty-five (12.1%) infants developed severe ROP requiring treatment among 206 infants who underwent ROP screening. Mean birthweight and gestational age of total cohort were 1013±159 g and 27.9±1.6 weeks, respectively. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that birthweight (OR: 0.64 (95% Cl 0.47–0.88); p=0.006), duration of mechanical ventilation (OR: 1.17 (95% Cl 1.06–1.28); p=0.001), premature rupture of membrane >18 h (OR: 3.83 (95% Cl 1.2–12.2); p=0.02) and Uu positivity in both cultures (OR: 5.02 (95% Cl 1.8–13.9); p=0.002) were independent risk factors for the development of severe ROP requiring treatment.
Conclusions Respiratory tract colonization with Uu was independently associated with severe ROP requiring treatment.