• Each year, about 15 million infants (10% of all births) are born prematurely (before 37 weeks of gestational age). These preterm infants (neonates) commonly lack the full functionality required to digest and absorb breast milk or formula fed orally.

  • They are placed under parenteral nutrition (PN) for extended periods of time as they no longer have access to uteroplacental nutrition.

  • Current Clinical Practice

Neonates are commonly placed under total or supplemental PN.

  • Total: all required daily nutrition.

  • Supplemental: incomplete PN devoid of certain nutrients.


Depending on the clinical situation, a neonate could be on PN for days, weeks, and even years.


  • The use of PN in neonates is associated with high rates of dysglycemia and increasing liver damage risk with time.

  • Dysglycemia: An abnormal blood glucose level

  • Hypoglycemia (serum glucose level below 40 mg/dL)

  • Seizure, brain damage, death.

  • Hyperglycemia (serum glucose level above 150 mg/dL)

  • Nerve damage, kidney failure


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