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Brain Sci. 2014, 4(2), 321-334; doi:10.3390/brainsci4020321
Review

The Neurodevelopmental Impact of Neonatal Morphine Administration

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 and *
Division of Pediatric Anesthesiology, Department of Anesthesiology, Washington University in St. Louis, One Children's Place, Suite 5S-31, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 February 2014 / Revised: 1 April 2014 / Accepted: 15 April 2014 / Published: 25 April 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neurotoxicity and General Anaesthetics in the Young)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [212 KB, uploaded 25 April 2014]

Abstract

Medical management of newborn infants often necessitates recurrent painful procedures, which may alter nociceptive pathways during a critical developmental period and adversely effect neuropsychological outcomes. To mitigate the effects of repeated painful stimuli, opioid administration for peri-procedural analgesia and ICU (intensive care unit) sedation is common in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit). A growing body of basic and animal evidence suggests potential long-term harm associated with neonatal opioid therapy. Morphine increases apoptosis in human microglial cells, and animal studies demonstrate long-term changes in behavior, brain function, and spatial recognition memory following morphine exposure. This comprehensive review examines existing preclinical and clinical evidence on the long-term impacts of neonatal pain and opioid therapy.
Keywords: neonate; pain; development; neurotoxicity; morphine neonate; pain; development; neurotoxicity; morphine
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Attarian, S.; Tran, L.C.; Moore, A.; Stanton, G.; Meyer, E.; Moore, R.P. The Neurodevelopmental Impact of Neonatal Morphine Administration. Brain Sci. 2014, 4, 321-334.

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