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Worldwide, 1 in 10 babies are born preterm. Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD, also termed chronic lung disease of prematurity) is the major respiratory complication of preterm birth. The classic Northway description of BPD of airway injury with subsequent inflammation and fibrosis has given way to ‘new BPD’, with less fibrosis, and fewer, larger alveoli. Advances in care (including antenatal steroids and postnatal surfactant administration) are postulated to have led to this change. However, BPD incidence has remained static at 35%–45% of extremely preterm births,1 and remains a significant burden of care, requiring ambulatory and home oxygen, with increased healthcare visits and respiratory hospitalisations of affected infants. The sequelae of BPD persist into adulthood, where up to 25% of adult survivors of prematurity have ongoing respiratory symptoms.2 Treatment of BPD is primarily provision of ambulatory oxygen, awaiting lung growth to reduce the tachypnoea and hypoxia.
The widely used 2001 National Institutes of …
Contributors The editorial was cowritten by both authors, equally.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Data availability statement Data sharing not applicable as no datasets generated and/or analysed for this study.