Monitoring the incidence, duration and distribution of hyperglycaemia in very-low-birth-weight newborns and identifying associated factors

María del mar Fernández-Martínez 2 , José Luis Gómez-Llorente 1 , Jerónimo Momblán-Cabo 1 , Manuel Martin-González 1 , María Calvo-Bonachera 1 , María Olvera-Porcel 1  and Antonio Bonillo-Perales 1
  • 1 Hospital Universitario Torrecardenas, Almería, 04009, Spain
  • 2 Department of Paediatrics Service, Hospital Universitario Torrecardenas, Hermandad de Donantes de sangre s/n, Almería, 04009, Spain
María del mar Fernández-Martínez
  • Corresponding author
  • Department of Paediatrics Service, Hospital Universitario Torrecardenas, Hermandad de Donantes de sangre s/n, Almería, 04009, Spain
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, José Luis Gómez-Llorente, Jerónimo Momblán-Cabo, Manuel Martin-González, María Calvo-Bonachera, María Olvera-Porcel and Antonio Bonillo-Perales

Abstract

Objectives

Hyperglycaemia is a common metabolic disorder in very-low-birth-weight (VLBW) infants and is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. The objective is to describe the incidence, duration, episodes and distribution of hyperglycaemia during the first 7 days of life of VLBW infants.

Methods

This is a prospective cohort study of 60 newborns weighing <1,500 g. Blood glucose levels were monitored with a continuous glucose monitoring system (CGMS) during the first 7 days of life. Hyperglycaemia was defined as glucose ≥180 mg/dL (≥10 mmol/L).

Results

Incidence of hyperglycaemia recorded with the CGMS was 36.6% (95%CI: 24.6–50.1). In almost 74.6±5.48% of these cases the duration of the episode exceeded 30 min and in 45.25% (95%CI: 2.26–57.82) it exceeded 2 h. The condition occurred most frequently during the first 72 h of life. One-fifth of cases were not detected with scheduled capillary tests and 84.6% of these had hyperglycaemic episode durations of 30 min or more. Agreement between the two techniques was very good (r=0.90, p<0.001) and the CGMS proved to be reliable, accurate and safe. Hyperglycaemia detected by a CGMS is associated with lower gestational age (OR: 0.66, p=0.002), lower birth weight (OR: 0.99, p=0.003), the use of ionotropic drugs (OR: 11.07, p=0.005) and death (OR: 10.59, p=0.03), and is more frequent in preterm infants with sepsis (OR: 2.73, p=0.1). No other association was observed.

Conclusions

A CGMS could be useful during the first week of life in VLBW infants due to the high incidence and significant duration of hyperglycaemia and the high proportion of cases that remain undetected. The advantage of the CGMS is that it is able to detect hyperglycaemic episodes that the capillary test does not.

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