Oral dextrose gel for the treatment of hypoglycaemia in newborn infants.
Weston et al, Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2016 May 4
Neonatal hypoglycaemia, a common condition, can be associated with brain injury. It is frequently managed by providing infants with an alternative source of glucose, given enterally with formula or intravenously with dextrose solution. This often requires that mother and baby are cared for in separate environments and may inhibit breast feeding. Dextrose gel is simple and inexpensive and can be administered directly to the buccal mucosa for rapid correction of hypoglycaemia, in association with continued breast feeding and maternal care.
To assess the effectiveness of dextrose gel in correcting hypoglycaemia and in reducing long-term neurodevelopmental impairment.
Treatment of infants with neonatal hypoglycaemia with 40% dextrose gel reduces the incidence of mother-infant separation for treatment and increases the likelihood of full breast feeding after discharge compared with placebo gel. No evidence suggests occurrence of adverse effects during the neonatal period or at two years’ corrected age. Oral dextrose gel should be considered first-line treatment for infants with neonatal hypoglycaemia.