What is the role of infection barriers in the pathophysiology of neonatal sepsis?

Updated: Jun 13, 2019
  • Author: Nathan S Gollehon, MD, FAAP; Chief Editor: Muhammad Aslam, MD  more...
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Answer

The physical and chemical barriers to infection in the human body are present in the newborn but are functionally deficient. Skin and mucous membranes are broken down easily in the premature infant. Neonates who are ill, premature, or both are at additional risk because of the invasive procedures that breach their physical barriers to infection.

Because of the interdependence of the immune response, the individual deficiencies of the various components of immune activity in the neonate conspire to create a hazardous situation when the neonate is exposed to infectious threats.


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