Journal of the Korean Pediatric Society 1997;40(9):1227-1231.
Published online September 15, 1997.
Erythropoietin Levels in Premature Infants Following Prolonged Treatment with Theophylline
Kug Hwan Kim1, Eun Seok Yang1, Sang Kee Park2
1Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Chosun University, Kwang Ju, Korea
2Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Chosun University, Kwang Ju, Korea
미숙아에서 장기간 Theophylline 치료에 따른 혈청 Erythropoietin치 변화
김국환1, 양은석1, 박상기2
1조선대학교 의과대학 소아과학교실
2조선대학교 의과대학 소아과학교실
: Theophylline, an adenosine antagonist commonly used in premature infants to treat apnea, has been shown to decrease erythropoietin levels in adults. We studied the effect of theophylline on serum erythropoietin levels in premature infants with apnea.
: Subject were 12 premature infants with apnea who were admitted to the NICU, Chosun University Hospital. The first dose of theophylline was 5mg/kg, given intravenously, followed by 1 to 2mg/kg per day. Serum levels were maintained between 5 and 12μg/dl with dosage adjustments. Erythropoietin, hemoglobin, hematocrit, reticulocyte count, erythrocyte indices were obtained on the last day of theophylline treatment and again 1 week later. Erythropoietin levels were determined by radioimmunoassay. Blood transfusions were avoided a week before and during the study period.
: 1) Hemoglobin and hematocrit levels were decreased at 1 week after the discontinuation of theophylline treatment compared to the last day of theophylline treatment(P < 0.05), but reticulocyte count(%) was increased(P < 0.05). 2) There was a significant increase in serum erythropoietin levels from 3.31±1.53u/l to 6.68±2.41u/l(P < 0.05). 3) No correlation was found between erythropoietin levels and the number of days on respirator, the number of days of O2 supply, the number of apneic episodes, the number of blood transfusion, the period of theophylline treatment and the theophylline blood levels.
: We suggest that prolonged treatment with theophylline might reduce erythropoietin production in premature infants.
Key Words: Theophylline, Erythropoietin, Apnea of prematurity

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