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The purpose of this study is to determine if postpyloric feedings effectively improve objective measures of pulmonary health in preterm infants with chronic lung disease when compared with nasogastric (NG) feedings. This research will (1) determine the optimal nutritional management to prevent a common and costly complication of prematurity, and (2) use a novel crossover design that examines outcomes of clinical endpoints alongside biomarkers.


Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia

Recruitment Status


Detailed Description

Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) affects up to 50,000 preterm infants annually in the United States and is the most common complication of prematurity. Despite improving survival in preterm infants, incidence of BPD is increasing. Overall, 11% of infants are born preterm in the United States annually. While many outcomes of prematurity, including survival, have improved over time, the incidence of BPD has increased. Nearly all babies with BPD require provision of feeds via an enteral tube due to feeding immaturity and ongoing need for respiratory support, and up to ¼ of babies with the most severe forms of BPD require this long-term, and are discharged home with nasal or surgically placed feeding tubes. However, enteral feeding into the stomach frequently results in reflux in preterm infants. This may cause aspiration into the respiratory tract, which can result in further damage to the lungs and worsen respiratory outcomes. The study will measure the impact of NJ feedings on lung disease severity in a prospective crossover trial among infants at high-risk of developing BPD. Each randomized patient will participate in two blocks of feeding, a nasogastric (NG) and a nasojejunal (NJ, postpyloric) block. Subjects will be randomized to either the control (NG) or intervention (NJ) feedings in the first block. Outcomes will be compared pairwise by subject between the NG and NJ blocks. The findings of this study would be immediately impactful for neonatologists, pediatricians, pediatric pulmonologists, pediatric gastroenterologists, advanced practitioners, and nutritionists who determine nutritional strategies for preterm infants.

Eligibility Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

Preterm infants born < 32 weeks' gestation may enroll at 34-44 weeks post-menstrual age, who:

Remain on either invasive ventilation or non-invasive ventilation (continuous positive airway pressure or nasal intermittent positive pressure ventilation) for minimum 48 hours at the time of study entry. The minimum support required for inclusion is CPAP > 5cm H2O or CPAP 5 with FiO2 > 21%.
Have ongoing need for respiratory support due to underlying lung disease from prematurity.
Are tolerating > 80 ml/kg/day of enteral feedings at baseline, either via nasogastric (NG) or nasojejunal (NJ) tube. Patients may be receiving gastric (NG) or postpyloric (NJ) feedings.

Exclusion Criteria:

Infants who are transiently on respiratory support at the time of study entry due to another reason than underlying lung disease from prematurity; for example, recovery from a surgical intervention.
Infants who have other comorbidities that significantly contribute to lung disease, including cyanotic congenital heart disease, or other genetic, congenital, or pulmonary abnormalities.
Infants who were evaluated for necrotizing enterocolitis (including holding feedings) in the 7 days prior to study enrollment.
Infants with known gastrointestinal or airway malformations that would affect tolerance of feeds or the route of delivery of enteral feedings.


Intervention Type

Intervention Name


Gastric Feeds


Jejunal Feeds


Not Applicable



Min Age

0 Hours

Max Age

1 Year

Download Date

November 13, 2023

Principal Investigator

This field has been modified from to show a contact specific to Boston Children's.

Primary Contact Information

Vanessa J Young, MS

This field has been modified from to show a contact specific to Boston Children's.

For more information on this trial, visit


For more information and to contact the study team:

Randomized Controlled Crossover Trial of Postpyloric Feedings to Improve Pulmonary Outcomes in High-risk Preterm Infants NCT05777512 Vanessa J Young, MS