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A safety and feasibility study of the use of 670 nm red light in premature neonates



Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a vasoproliferative disorder of the retina affecting extremely preterm or low birth weight infants The aim of this study was to assess the feasibility and safety of 670 nm red light use in a neonatal intensive care unit.

Study Design:

Neonates <30 weeks gestation and <1150 g were enrolled within 48 h of birth. Data collected included cause of preterm delivery, Apgar scores and birthweight. 670 nm red light was administered for 15 min per day from a distance of 25 cm, delivering 9 J cm2, from the time of inclusion in the study until 34 weeks postmenstrual age. Infants were assessed daily for the presence of any skin burns or other adverse signs.


Twenty-eight neonates were enrolled, seven 24 to 26 weeks and twenty-one 27 to 29 weeks gestation. The most common cause for preterm delivery was preterm labor (14/28) with five of these having evidence of chorioamnionitis. There were no skin burns or other documented adverse events. Entry into the study was readily achieved and treatment was well accepted by parents and nursing staff.


670 nm red light appears to be a safe and feasible treatment for further research in respect to ROP.

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This study was supported by a grant from the Canberra Hospital Private Practice Fund.

Author Contributions

MB, MB, RE, MEA, JD, KV, JP and RN conceived and designed the study; AK, MB, VP and MEA performed the study; AK analyzed the data; AK, MB, RE, MEA, JD, KV, JP and RN wrote the manuscript.

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Correspondence to A L Kent.

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Kent, A., Broom, M., Parr, V. et al. A safety and feasibility study of the use of 670 nm red light in premature neonates. J Perinatol 35, 493–496 (2015).

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