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Disciplines: Respiratory Therapy
Hours: 3 Contact Hours
Author(s): Charlene M. Deuber, DNP, NNP-BC, CPNP
Peer Reviewer(s): Carrie Steele, MSN, CRNP
Item#: V7222
Contents: 1 Course Book (24 pages)

Birth Defects Affecting the Respiratory System, Updated 1st Edition

Price $29.95
Item # V7222
When available, the Online Course format is included with the hard copy, eBook, or audio book formats!

Expiration Date: January 1, 2019

Birth defects are also called congenital defects or congenital anomalies. Congenital defects are anatomical, structural, functional, or metabolic conditions present at birth that are not within the normal expectations. Congenital anomalies may be further defined in terms of severity, pathogenesis, or pattern, and may be noted immediately at or following birth (McLean, 2005). Anomalies can exist as a single finding or a constellation of findings (syndrome). 

One in 33 babies born in the United States has a birth defect (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], 2014a). Birth defects affect 3% of all pregnancies (CDC, 2014a). Although each of the 4,000 known congenital problems affects only a few individuals, an estimated 150,000 babies are born in the United States each year with a birth defect (KidsHealth, n.d.a). In fact, birth defects are the leading cause of infant mortality (20%) in the United States (CDC, 2014b).  

While much about specific causes of certain birth defects is unknown, it is known that they can be genetic, environmental, related to the mother’s health and habits, or multifactorial, meaning that the defects result from a combination of these factors. The causes of many birth defects are unknown (CDC, 2014c) and many babies with birth defects are born to apparently healthy parents. The majority of pregnancies and births are normal, and the number of deaths due to birth defects has decreased significantly in recent years. Many abnormal congenital conditions (anomalies) are being successfully treated in utero and in the immediate postpartum period (NIH, 2014).

This course gives an overview of some of the conditions related to congenital defects that affect the respiratory system. The intent of this course is to provide health professionals with knowledge of these major conditions that will help them to recognize congenital defects, intervene, and teach about possible prevention. The overall goal of this course is to provide a knowledge base for health professionals who care for mothers in prenatal clinics, labor and delivery, or newborn nursery areas. The course will also provide a basic orientation to birth defects affecting the respiratory system for those planning to work with high-risk newborns. 

Course Objectives

  • Describe the developmental stages of the respiratory system.
  • Identify the gestational period in which there is the greatest risk for congenital anomalies.
  • Identify factors that may affect pulmonary development and function.
  • Describe selected congenital anomalies affecting the respiratory system and their potential causes.
  • Identify the clinical signs of selected congenital disorders of the respiratory system and their treatment options.

Charlene M. Deuber, DNP, NNP-BC, CPNP, is an advanced practice nurse and nurse manager in the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. She is a member of the adjunct clinical faculty of the Thomas Jefferson University School of Nursing’s neonatal nurse practitioner program and at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Nursing in Philadelphia, where she also serves as a lecturer. Dr. Deuber received her bachelor of science degree (summa cum laude) from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, where she also earned her master’s degree in nursing and did postgraduate study in the neonatal nurse practitioner program. She went on to earn her doctorate in nursing practice from the School of Nursing at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Dr. Deuber has been the author and co-author of numerous scholarly publications and is a member of the Sigma Theta Tau National Nursing Honor Society.

Carrie Steele, MSN, CRNP, is a neonatal nurse practitioner and a pediatric critical care nurse practitioner who has devoted her career to the care of the most vulnerable infants in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). She began her career at Penn State Children’s Hospital after graduating from Pennsylvania State University in University Park, Pennsylvania, with her BSN. She then moved to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, where she worked in the NICU for more than 15 years. Ms. Steele completed her master’s of science in nursing at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and then began teaching part time in 2002 in both the pediatric and neonatal nurse practitioner programs as a lecturer and course director. She recently earned her post-master’s certificate as a neonatal nurse practitioner at the University of Pennsylvania. She has authored a chapter for the American Association of Critical Care Nurses’ (AACN) Procedure Manual for Pediatric Acute and Critical Care and has spoken professionally at several conferences on neonatal respiratory care and gastroesophageal reflux.

  • Courses must be completed on or before the expiration date noted in the course description above.
  • You must score 75% or higher on the final exam and complete the course evaluation to pass this course and receive a certificate of completion.
  • Through our review processes, Western Schools ensures that this course content is presented in a balanced, unbiased manner and is free from commercial influence. It is Western Schools’ policy not to accept commercial support.
  • All persons involved in the planning and development of this course have disclosed no relevant financial relationships or other conflicts of interest related to the course content.