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  1. Alhussin, Walid MD
  2. Verklan, M. Terese PhD, CCNS, RNC, FAAN


Prostaglandin E1 (PGE1) has been used for decades in the medical treatment of ductal dependent critical congenital heart disease in neonates. The article is a report of a retrospective evaluation of the long-term effects of PGE1 in a neonatal intensive care unit in Saudi Arabia. There were 22 subjects with a wide spectrum of cardiac defects maintained on PGE1 for a mean of 38 days (range: 6-200 days). The majority of the complications included hypokalemia, hypotension, and apnea/bradycardia. Pseudo-Barett syndrome and gastric outlet obstruction were also found. While long-term administration of PGE1 is rare in North America, it is important to be aware of possible adverse effects of fluid and electrolyte imbalance, gastric outlet obstruction, and feeding difficulties.