Background: A head to head comparison study on renal function and ductal response between indomethacin and ibuprofen has rarely been conducted in extremely low birth weight (ELBW) infants. Objectives: The aim was to compare renal function and ductal response between indomethacin and ibuprofen in ELBW infants. Methods: We performed a double-blind randomized control trial to compare renal function and ductal response between indomethacin (0.2, 0.1, and 0.1 mg/kg i.v. every 24 h for 3 doses) and ibuprofen lysine (10, 5, and 5 mg/kg i.v. every 24 h for 3 doses) in ELBW infants with significant hemodynamic patent ductus arteriosus (cardiovascular dysfunction score >3 and LA/AO ratio ≥1.3). Results: A total of 144 infants were enrolled: 73 received indomethacin and 71 received ibuprofen lysine. Significant decreases in urine output were seen in 30 infants (41%) in the indomethacin group and 15 (21%) in the ibuprofen group (p = 0.02). The indomethacin group was associated with a significantly higher chance of persistent ductal response than the ibuprofen group (66 vs. 49%, p = 0.046), but with a lower glomerular filtration rate on day 1, higher serum creatinine on days 1, 2, and 7, and lower urinary prostaglandin on days 2-7. Both groups were comparable in mortality and in bronchopulmonary dysplasia, intraventricular hemorrhage, necrotizing enterocolitis, and retinopathy of prematurity morbidity. Conclusions: With the current dosage, ibuprofen had fewer renal side effects but was associated with a lower rate of persistent ductal closure in ELBW infants. The precise role of prostaglandin on renal tubular function in ELBW infants remains to be further investigated.
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