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Infection rates and parenteral nutrition

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Patients receiving higher calorific intakes of parenteral nutrition (TPN) are at increased risk of bloodstream infections, claim US researchers.

They studied 200 patients receiving TPN, of which 49% contracted an infection.

Infected patients received 36 kcal on average per day, compared with 31 kcal for those with no infection.

There was, however, no difference in mortality between the two groups.

The authors said: ‘Our observations suggest that the incidence of bloodstream infections is related to the amount of parenteral calories that patients received, rather than their blood glucose concentrations.’

‘We suggest that parenteral calorific intake be prescribed judiciously and monitored closely, accounting for all intravenous caloric sources.’

Critical Care (2007) 11: R114

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