How Long Do Late Preterm Infants Need Supplemental Feedings?

Discussion Premature infants have many problems to overcome because they just aren’t ready to live outside the uterine environment. Late premature infants are defined as birth between 34 0/7 weeks and 36 6/7 weeks gestation. In the U.S. this gestational age accounts for ~70% of all preterm births or ~300,000 births/year. Late preterm infants can have delayed oral feeding skills and failure to thrive along with increased hospital readmissions. Breastfeeding can be difficult as infants can have poor coordination and poor tone, along with decreased lactation in the mother. Learning Point Weight gain lags behind intrauterine weight gain in premature infants including late preterm infants. The intrauterine growth is ~15 g/day at this age and in one study only 2% of preterm infants achieved this weight gain. Late preterm infants have increased energy, protein, calcium and phosphorous needs as this is the time that the fetus would be storing fat and minerals. It is also a time when brain growth and volume are markedly increased. Late preterm infants need additional nutritional supplementation. Therefore it is recommended that late preterm infants be breastfed with fortified human milk until at least 40 weeks postconceptional age. Human milk fortifier or special preterm discharge formula are recommended for use as the supplements as they contain additional calories, protein and minerals compared to standard infant formula. Preterm infants that are born earlier and weigh less, ...
Source: PediatricEducation.org - Category: Pediatrics Authors: Tags: Uncategorized Source Type: news

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No abstract available
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