Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research
On-line version ISSN 1414-431X
EL-BEITUNE, P. et al. Antiretroviral agents and acid-base balance at delivery of the neonate. Braz J Med Biol Res [online]. 2007, vol.40, n.7, pp. 957-961. Epub June 11, 2007. ISSN 1414-431X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-879X2006005000126.
Limited evidence is available regarding antiretroviral (ARV) safety for uninfected infants exposed to these drugs in utero. Our objective was to determine if ARV administered to pregnant women is associated with decreasing umbilical arterial pH and base excess in uninfected infants. A prospective study was conducted on 57 neonates divided into three groups: ZDV group, born to mothers taking zidovudine (N = 20), triple therapy (TT) group, born to mothers taking zidovudine + lamivudine + nelfinavir (N = 25), and control group (N = 12), born to uninfected mothers. Umbilical cord blood was used to determine umbilical artery gases. A test was performed to calculate the sample by comparing means by the unpaired one-tailed t-test, with a = 0.05 and ß = 20%, indicating the need for a sample of 18 newborn infants for the study groups to detect differences higher than 20%. The control and ARV groups were similar in gestational age, birth weight, and Apgar scores. Values of pH, pCO2, bicarbonate, and base excess in cord arterial blood obtained at delivery from the newborns exposed to TT were 7.23, 43.2 mmHg, 19.5 mEq/L, and -8.5 nmol/L, respectively, with no significant difference compared to the control and ZDV groups. We conclude that intrauterine exposure to ARV is not associated with a pathological decrease in umbilical arterial pH or base excess. While our data are reassuring, follow-up is still limited and needs to be continued into adulthood because of the possible potential for adverse effects of triple antiretroviral agents.
Keywords : HIV; Infant toxicity; Pregnancy; Umbilical arterial pH; Apgar scores.