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The objective of this study was to assess differences in myocardial systolic and diastolic function and vascular function in children 2−5 years of age born to diabetic as compared to non-diabetic mothers.
This study was a retrospective cohort conducted in 2016 at The Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi, Pakistan. It included children between 2 and 5 years of age born to mothers with and without exposure to diabetes in utero (n = 68 in each group) and who were appropriate for gestational age. Myocardial morphology and function using echocardiogram and carotid intima media thickness (cIMT) and pulse wave velocity was performed to evaluate cardiac function as well as macrovascular remodelling in these children. Multiple linear regression was used to compare the groups.
There was no significant difference in cardiac morphology, myocardial systolic and diastolic function, and macrovascular assessment between the exposed and unexposed groups of AGA children. Subgroup analysis demonstrated a significantly decreased mitral E/A ratio in children whose mothers were on medications as compared to those on dietary control (median [IQR] = 1.7 [1.6–1.9] and 1.56 [1.4–1.7], respectively, p = 0.02), and a higher cIMT in children whose mothers were on medication as compared to controls (0.48 [0.44–0.52] and 0.46 [0.44–0.50], respectively, p = 0.03).
In utero exposure to uncontrolled maternal diabetes has an effect on the cardiovascular structure and function in children aged 2−5 years. However, future work requires long-term follow-up from fetal to adult life to assess these changes over the life course.
Cardiopulmonary bypass is associated with systemic inflammatory response. Steroids suppress this response, although the therapeutic evidence remains controversial. We hypothesised that intravenous steroids in children undergoing open-heart surgery would decrease inflammation leading to better early post-operative outcomes. We conducted a randomised controlled trial to evaluate the trends in the levels of immunomodulators and their effects on clinical parameters.
To assess the effects of intravenous steroids on early post-operative inflammatory markers and clinical parameters in children undergoing open-heart surgery.
Materials and methods
A randomised controlled trial involving 152 patients, from one month up to 18 years of age, who underwent open-heart surgery for congenital heart disease from April 2010–2012 was carried out. Patients were randomised and administered either three scheduled intravenous pulse doses of dexamethasone (1 mg/kg) or placebo. Blood samples were drawn at four time intervals and serum levels of inflammatory cytokines – Interleukin-6, 8, 10, 18, and tumour necrosis factor-alpha – were measured. Clinical parameters were also assessed.
Blood cytokine levels were compared between the dexamethasone (n=65) and placebo (n=64) groups. Interleukin-6 levels were lower at 6 and 24 hours post-operatively (p<0.001), and Interleukin-10 levels were higher 6 hours post-operatively (p<0.001) in the steroid group. Interleukin-8, 18, and tumour necrosis factor-alpha levels did not differ between the groups at any time intervals. The clinical parameters were similar in both the groups.
Dexamethasone caused quantitative suppression of Interleukin-6 and increased Interleukin-10 activation, contributing to reduced immunopathology, but it did not translate into clinical benefit in the short term.
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