Three-hourly feeding intervals are associated with faster advancement in very preterm infants.

Early Hum Dev 2019 04 2;131:1-5. Epub 2019 Feb 2.

Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine Division, CHOC Children's, Orange, CA, USA. Electronic address:

Objective: To compare the effect of two-hourly (Q2H) vs. three-hourly (Q3H) feeding on time to achieve full enteral feeding, growth metrics and respiratory tolerance in very preterm infants with birth weight ≤ 1250 g.

Study Design: Retrospective study review of 18 months before and after a change in our feeding guideline from Q3H to Q2H feedings.

Results: 113 infants were included, 59 in Q3H and 54 in Q2H groups. Q2H infants required 10% more days to achieve full enteral feeding, however it was not statistically significant (P = 0.054). Q2H feeding was associated with 16% more central catheter days (P = 0.02) and 17% more parenteral nutrition days (P = 0.019). There were no differences in respiratory outcomes or growth metrics between the groups.

Conclusion: Very preterm infants fed Q3H had less central catheter and parenteral nutrition days when compared to those fed Q2H, without significant differences in growth or respiratory outcomes.

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Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2019.01.021DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6435383PMC
April 2019

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