Improved nutrition for extremely preterm infants — A population based observational study

Westin V, et al. Clin Nutr ESPEN. 2018.


BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Extremely preterm (EPT) infants are at high risk for malnutrition due to immaturity and medical complications and they often accumulate nutritional deficits and experience growth faltering during treatment at neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). Enhanced intake of energy and protein during the first weeks of life improves weight gain and head circumference growth. The optimal nutritional strategy for these infants’ health and long-term development remains unknown. Nutritional regiments have been identified as a potential area for improvement in Swedish NICUs. The aim of this study was to evaluate changes in nutritional intake over time during the first 56 postnatal days in EPT (<27 gestational weeks; n = 316) infants, who were treated in NICUs during 2004–2011 in Stockholm, using a population-based study approach.

CONCLUSIONS: Neonatal nutrition improved significantly in Stockholm from 2004 to 2011. Above all, parenteral nutrition was initiated more promptly during the first week and was provided at higher quantities. However, many of the EPT infants born during the later years still did not reach the recommended macronutrient intake levels. A significant weight gain improvement was observed between 2004–2005 and 2006–2011.