The effect of intravenous amino acids on plasma amino acid concentration during total parenteral nutrition in infants with necrotizing enterocolitis
CITATION: Thom, J. C., Victor, T. & Pichanick, A. M. E. 1981. The effect of intravenous amino acids on plasma amino acid concentration during total parenteral nutrition in infants with necrotizing enterocolitis. South African Medical Journal, 59:946-948.
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Plasma aminograms of infants receiving total parenteral nutrition as part of the treatment for necrotizing enterocolitis were studied. Their ages varied from 2 to 60 days and their mean birth mass was 1621 g (range 760-2550 g). The intravenous administration of amino acids produced changes in plasma amino acid levels corresponding to the concentration of individual amino acid levels in the solution employed: higher levels of amino acids in the infusate produced increased plasma levels, whereas low plasma levels were obtained for amino acids not present or present in small amounts according to the solution used. The infants did not appear to suffer in any way, but the long-term effects still have to be evaluated. Pending further knowledge in this regard it is suggested that plasma amino acid levels should be maintained as near to normal values as possible. This could probably be achieved by the use of amino acid solutions specially formulated according to the amino acid profile of breast milk or the plasma amino acid profile of normal infants.