Infant respiratory distress syndrome (IRDS), also called neonatal respiratory distress syndrome, is a syndrome common in premature infants that is caused by developmental insufficiency of surfactant production and structural immaturity in the lungs. The result is inability to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide effectively across the alveolar-capillary membrane.
Symptoms of RDS may include rapid breathing, grunting, flaring of the nostrils, and cyanosis (bluish skin and lips). The severity of the symptoms can vary depending on the severity of the RDS. Treatment for RDS may include supplemental oxygen, respiratory support, and medications to improve lung function.