Background Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infections can be prevented by good hygiene and prophylactic palivizumab, a monoclonal antibody against the fusion protein of VRS. The criteria for selecting patients for palivizumab prescription in our hospital are: <28 weeks preterm infants (PI) and age <12 months (criterion 1), <32 weeks PI and age <6 months (criterion 2), age <2 years with bronchopulmonary dysplasia (criterion 3), age <2 years with haemodynamically significant congenital heart disease (criterion 4).
Purpose To describe the use of palivizumab in the vaccination campaign in our hospital, evaluating the appropriateness of its use by the established criteria and its effectiveness.
Material and methods We performed a retrospective observational study. All patients who received palivizumab between 01/10/2013 and 31/03/2014 were included. The data collected using the clinical records were: sex, gestational age, selection criteria, and number of hospitalizations due to acute bronchiolitis between 01/10/2013 and 30/09/2014. RSV was analysed in these patients by Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR).
Results Palivizumab was administered to 68 patients (48.5% female) with a median gestational age of 209 days (176–287). 24 patients (35.3%) fulfilled criterion 2, 14 (20.6%) criterion 1, 10 (14.7%) criterion 4, 5 (7.3%) criteria 1 and 3, 4 (5.9%) criteria 2 and 4, 3 (4.4%) criterion 3, 2 (2.9%) criteria 3 and 4. 4 patients did not meet any criteria and 2 had no data. Only 6 patients who received palivizumab were hospitalised with a diagnosis of acute bronchiolitis and their RSV PCRs were negative.
Conclusion Palivizumab is used under the established criteria in our hospital. The study data show that immunising these at-risk patients with the palivizumab vaccine was an effective strategy for at least one year. Although the study period was 1 year, it would be desirable to measure effectiveness over a longer period.
References and/or Acknowledgements No conflict of interest.
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