Randomised controlled pilot trial comparing low dose and very low- dose microdrop administration of phenylephrine and cyclopentolate for retinopathy of prematurity eye examinations in neonates.

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To determine ifVery low dose mydriatic eye microdrop regimen sufficiently dilates the pupil (above 4.1 mm) compared with the currently used low dose mydriatic eye microdrop regimen.Cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and respiratory adverse effects occur following eye drop instillation.Seventeen premature infants were recruited into this prospective, randomised controlled pilot trial in January 2017 to November 2018. Data were collected from the single-centre Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Dunedin Hospital, New Zealand. The inclusion criteria were birth weight less than 1500 g or gestational age less than 31 weeks, or any premature infant requiring red reflex testing. Infants were randomised to receive either phenylephrine 1% or 0.5% and cyclopentolate 0.2% or 0.1%, 1 microdrop in both eyes. Efficacy outcome measures were pupil size at retinopathy of prematurity eye examination (ROPEE) and ophthalmologist rating of ease of screen.All participants had sufficient pupillary dilation for a successful ROPEE. Ophthalmologists rated the ROPEE as easy for 90% of all examinations. Pupil dilation measurements at the time of examination, mean±SD, 4.8±0.2 (95% CI 4.5 to 5.2) mm for treatment A and 5±0.2 (95%CI 4.6 to 5.4) mm for treatment B (p=0.61). There were no statistically significant differences between the groups for safety data.Very low dose microdrop administration of phenylephrine and cyclopentolate appears to be effective at sufficiently dilating the neonatal pupil for ROPEEs. Low dose and very low dose microdrop mydriatic regimens may also reduce the risk of unwanted adverse effects associated with these medicines.Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (reference ACTRN12616001266459p).

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