Generic Name: calfactant (kal FAK tant)
Brand Name: Infasurf
Medically reviewed on September 20, 2017
What is calfactant?
Calfactant is a lung surface acting agent, or "surfactant." It helps the lungs function normally. Calfactant is similar to the natural fluid in the lungs that helps maintain effective breathing.
Calfactant is used to treat or prevent respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) in a premature baby whose lungs have not fully developed.
Calfactant may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Your baby will receive this medication in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) or similar hospital setting.
Calfactant is given directly into the baby's lungs through a breathing tube that is also connected to a ventilator (a machine that moves air in and out of the lungs to help your baby breathe easier and get enough oxygen).
Your baby will remain under constant supervision during treatment with calfactant.
Before taking this medicine
To best participate in the care of your baby while he or she is in the NICU, carefully follow all instructions provided by your baby's caregivers.
How is calfactant given?
Calfactant is given directly into the baby's lungs through a breathing tube. Your baby will receive this medication in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) or similar hospital setting.
The breathing tube is connected to a ventilator (a machine that moves air in and out of the lungs to help your baby breathe easier and get enough oxygen).
Calfactant is given as soon as possible after the baby's birth, usually within 30 minutes.
Calfactant is usually given every 12 hours for up to 3 doses.
Your baby's breathing, blood pressure, oxygen levels, and other vital signs will be watched closely during treatment with calfactant.
What happens if a dose is missed?
Since calfactant is given as needed by a healthcare professional, it is not likely that your baby will miss a dose.
What happens if an overdose is given?
Since calfactant is given in a controlled medical setting by a healthcare professional, an overdose is not likely to occur. However, an overdose of calfactant is not expected to produce life-threatening symptoms.
What should be avoided after receiving calfactant?
Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions in feeding, medications, or activity after your baby has been treated with calfactant.
Calfactant side effects
Calfactant causes few side effects. There is a possibility that the baby will have breathing difficulties during the calfactant treatment, and these problems may require further treatment by health care professionals. Your baby will remain under constant supervision during treatment with calfactant.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
Calfactant dosing information
Usual Pediatric Dose for Respiratory Distress Syndrome:
Treatment of Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS):
-Less than 72 hours of life: 107.1 mg/kg (3 mL/kg) birth weight instilled intratracheally every 12 hours for a total of up to 3 doses.
-72 hour of life or older: Data not available
Prevention of RDS in Premature Infants:
-Less than 29 weeks of gestational age: 107.1 mg/kg (3 mL/kg) birth weight instilled intratracheally as soon as possible, preferably within 30 minutes after birth. Dose can be repeated every 12 hours for a total of up to 3 doses.
-29 weeks of gestational age or older: Data not available
-Rapid and substantial increases in blood oxygenation and improved lung compliance often follow instillation of this drug.
-Adjust oxygen therapy and ventilator pressures appropriately.
-Immediate care and stabilization of the premature infant born with hypoxemia and/or bradycardia should precede prophylaxis with this drug.
-Discontinue administration for bradycardia, reflux into the endotracheal tube, airway obstruction, cyanosis, dislodgement of the endotracheal tube, or hypoventilation.
-Endotracheal suctioning or reintubation may be needed when there are signs of airway obstruction.
-Data on the efficacy of this drug are limited to doses of approximately 100 mg phospholipid/kg body weight and up to a total of 4 doses.
-Prophylaxis therapy at birth for premature infants less than 29 weeks of gestational age at significant risk for RDS
-Treatment of infants less than or equal to 72 hours of age with RDS (confirmed by clinical and radiologic findings) and requiring endotracheal intubation
What other drugs will affect calfactant?
Your baby's caregivers will manage and monitor all medications given to your baby during treatment in the NICU. A drug interaction between calfactant and other medications is not expected to occur.
Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
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