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CME: The Current and Emerging Landscape of Pharmacotherapy for Neonatal Respiratory Distress Syndrome (NRDS)

Activity Description / Statement of Need:

In this online, self-learning activity:

Neonatal respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) occurs in 10.1% of preterm infants born at 34 weeks’ gestational age (GA), corresponding to an over 40-fold increased risk as compared to their 39- to 40-week-GA counterparts. The risk decreases with increasing GA; at a GA of 37 weeks, the risk has fallen to just to just three times that of a full-term infants. Aside from premature birth, risk factors include: maternal gestational diabetes, male infant, and multiplets.

Target Audience:

The following healthcare professionals: Neonatologists; physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, and pharmacists who clinically encounter neonatal patients with RSD.

This program is supported by an educational grant from Chiesi.

Learners may participate in this activity free of charge.

Release Date: December 05, 2020 -- Expiration Date: December 05, 2022

Faculty: Jack Sills, MD


Setting the stage

  • Prevalence of neonatal RDS
  • Risk factors and relationship with gestational age (review of neonatal lung development)
  • Clinical features of disease
  • Differential diagnoses

Treating neonatal RDS

  • Imaging of neonatal RDS
  • Prenatal prevention of RDS: Corticoteroids, delaying labor, referring to a specialist
  • Pharmacotherapy: Corticosteroids, surfactant replacement therapy
    • Review: Role of endogenous surfactant
    • Emerging research
  • Respiratory support: CPAP, intubation
  • Differing schools of thought: Inhaled nitric oxide, caffeine, high-flow nasal cannula
  • Case studies: Prevention, diagnosis, and management

Learning Objectives

By the end of the session the participant will be able to:

  • Identify the pathophysiology, clinical features, and strategies for diagnosis of neonatal RDS.
  • Review current and emerging options for the management of neonatal RDS.
  • Develop pre- and postnatal treatment plans for the prevention and management of neonatal RDS.


ACCME Activity #201861268

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education through ScientiaCME. ScientiaCME is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Credit Designation: ScientiaCME designates this educational activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™  toward the AMA Physician's Recognition Award. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

ABP MOC Recognition Statement: Successful completion of this CME activity, which includes participation in the evaluation component, enables the participant to earn up to 1.0 MOC points in the American Board of Pediatrics's (ABP) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program. Participants will earn MOC points equivalent to the amount of CME credits claimed for the activity. It is the CME activity provider's responsibility to submit participant completion information to ACCME for the purpose of granting ABP MOC credit.

Physicians: For applicable courses, to attain maintenance of certification (MOC) credit, you must enter your board certification ID # and birth date correctly.  It is the learner's responsibility to provide this information completely and accurately at the completion of the activity. Without providing it, the learner will NOT receive MOC credit for this activity. Please note: not all activities on this site provide MOC credit. If this activity does not specify that it provides MOC credit in the "Accreditation" section on this page, then it does NOT provide MOC credit.  


ScientiaCME is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) as a provider of continuing pharmacy education. This activity is approved for 1.0 contact hours (0.1 CEUs) of continuing pharmacy education credit. Proof of participation will be posted to your NABP CPE profile within 4 to 6 weeks to participants who have successfully completed the post-test. Participants must participate in the entire presentation and complete the course evaluation to receive continuing pharmacy education credit. ACPE # 0574-0000-20-056-H01-P. ACPE Accreditation effective 12/05/20 expires 12/05/22. This is a Application (A)-type activity.

Pharmacists: You must enter your NABP # and birth date correctly so that proof of participation can be posted to your NABP CPE profile. It is the learner's responsibility to provide this information completely and accurately at the completion of the activity. Without providing it, the learner will NOT receive CPE credit for this activity.

Nurse Practitioners (NPs): The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners accepts AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ from organizations accredited by the ACCME.  ScientiaCME will provide NPs who successfully complete each activity with a certificate of participation indicating that the activity was designated for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™.

Physician Assistants: The American Academy of Physician Assistants accepts AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ from organizations accredited by the ACCME.

Faculty Disclosure and Resolution of COI

As a provider of continuing medical education, it is the policy of ScientiaCME to ensure balance, independence, objectivity, and scientific rigor in all of its educational activities. In accordance with this policy, faculty and educational planners must disclose any significant relationships with commercial interests whose products or devices may be mentioned in faculty presentations, and any relationships with the commercial supporter of the activity. The intent of this disclosure is to provide the intended audience with information on which they can make their own judgments. Additionally, in the event a conflict of interest (COI) does exist, it is the policy of ScientiaCME to ensure that the COI is resolved in order to ensure the integrity of the CME activity. For this CME activity, any COI has been resolved thru content review ScientiaCME.

Faculty Disclosures:

Jack H. Sills, MD, Clinical Professor Pediatrics, University of California, Invine, CA has no relevant conflicts of interest to disclose.

Peer reviewer disclosure:

Rangasamy Ramanathan, MD, discloses that he has received research grant support and consulting honoraria from Cheisi.

Jae Kim, MD, discloses that they have received consulting honoraria from Medela, Nutricia, and Fujifilm; and have stock ownership in Astarte Medical and Nicolette.

Disclosures of Educational Planners: Charles Turck, PharmD, BCPS, BCCCP, CEO of
ScientiaCME, has no relevant conflicts of interest to disclose.

Commercial Support Disclosure: This program is supported by an educational grant from Chiesi.


  • Read the learning objectives above
  • Take the Pre-Test (optional). Completion of the pre-test will help us evaluate the knowedge gained by participating in this CME activity.
  • View the online activity. You may view this is in more than one session, and may pause or repeat any portion of the presentation if you need to.
  • Minimum participation threshold: Take the post-test. A score of 70% or higher is required to pass and proceed to the activity evaluation.
  • Complete the activity evaluation and CME registration. A CE certificate will be emailed to you immediately.

Cultural and Linguistic Competence

System Requirements

Windows 7 or above
Internet Explorer 8
*Adobe Acrobat Reader
Mac OS 10.2.8
Safari or Chrome or Firefox
*Adobe Acrobat Reader
Internet Explorer is not supported on the Macintosh

*Required to view Printable PDF Version

Perform Pre-Test (optional)

Please take a few minutes to participate in the optional pre-test. It will help us measure the knowledge gained by participating in this activity.

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