at UC Davis
study started
completion around
Principal Investigator
by Heather Siefkes (ucdavis)



The purpose of this research is to evaluate two oxygen saturation goals for newborns with pulmonary hypertension. Participation in this research will involve random assignment to one of two oxygen saturation goals, review of the medical record and targeted echocardiograms.

Official Title

Preductal Oxygen Saturation Target in Term and Late Preterm Neonates With Hypoxemic Respiratory Failure or Pulmonary Hypertension (POST-IT)


Successful transition at birth is dependent on establishment of lungs as the organ of gas exchange. Breathing at birth and an increase in alveolar oxygen tension (PAO2) leads to an 8-10 fold increase in pulmonary blood flow with a marked reduction in pulmonary vascular resistance (PVR). Failure to decrease PVR at birth results in hypoxemic respiratory failure (HRF) and persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN). Hypoxemia exacerbates PPHN by increasing PVR. However, administration of excess oxygen in animal studies has been shown to increase free radical formation and reduce response to pulmonary vasodilators such as inhaled nitric oxide (iNO).

Thus, there is potential for benefit and also poor outcomes at both higher and lower oxygen saturations (SpO2), with the ideal range being unknown. The investigators will conduct a randomized unblinded, pilot trial to compare two ranges of target preductal SpO2 in late preterm and term infants with HRF or PPHN. During this trial the investigators will assess the reliability of a hypoxic respiratory failure/pulmonary hypertension (HRF/PH) score that could then be used in a larger clinical trial. The investigators will also assess trial feasibility and obtain preliminary estimates of outcomes. Our central hypothesis is that neonates with pulmonary hypertension (PH) and/or HRF, targeting preductal SpO2 of 95-99% (intervention) will result in lower PVR and lower need for non-oxygen based pulmonary vasodilators (iNO, milrinone and sildenafil) compared to a target of 91-95% (standard).


Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn, Hypoxemic Respiratory Failure, Pulmonary Hypertension, Respiratory Insufficiency, Persistent Fetal Circulation Syndrome, Hypertension, 95% - 99% SpO2 target


You can join if…

  • Corrected gestational age (postmenstrual age) > 34 6/7 weeks
  • postnatal age ≤ 28 d
  • on respiratory support with invasive mechanical ventilation, non-invasive ventilation, CPAP or high flow nasal cannula (defined as flow rates ≥ 2 LPM with a humidifier), inspired oxygen concentration, FiO2 ≥ 0.3
  • and echocardiography shows any finding suggestive of PH (or score > 0 for PH in table 2).
  • Infants with congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH), Down syndrome, hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) on therapeutic hypothermia and patent ductus arteriosus (PDA), patent foramen ovale/atrial septal defect (PFO/ASD) and ventricular septal defect (VSD) (single or multiple) < 2 mm can be included in the study.

You CAN'T join if...

  • < 32 weeks gestation at birth (31 6/7 or lower)
  • Weight < 2000 g at the time of enrollment
  • Severe HRF with OI > 35 or SpO2 < 75% on FiO2 = 1.0 on mechanical ventilation for > 60 minutes in spite of correction of reversible factors such as pneumothorax
  • A condition or congenital anomaly known to be lethal (high likelihood of death during infancy) - e.g., trisomy 18 or trisomy 13
  • Congenital heart disease other than ASD/PFO, PDA or VSD (single or multiple defects) < 2 mm.


  • University of California-Davis
    Sacramento California 95817 United States

Lead Scientist at University of California Health

  • Heather Siefkes (ucdavis)
    Assistant Professor, Pediatrics, School of Medicine. Authored (or co-authored) 19 research publications


accepting new patients by invitation only
Start Date
Completion Date
University of California, Davis
Learn more or sign up for the study here!
Study Type
Expecting 30 study participants
Last Updated