An observational study to evaluate micronutrient status during enteral feeding

TE Johnson, SJ Janes, Anita MacDonald, M Elia, Ian Booth

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BACKGROUND: There are few data on the optimal micronutrient composition of paediatric enteral feeds. The recent European Directive on Foods for Special Medical Purposes (1999/21/EC) did not distinguish between the composition of adult and paediatric feeds. AIMS: To evaluate, in an open, observational study, the long term nutritional biochemistry of 12 children aged 1-6 years and/or 8-20 kg. METHODS: The children were receiving at least 50% of their estimated average requirement (EAR) for energy from paediatric enteral formulae: 1.0 kcal/ml (Nutrison Paediatric Standard) or 1.5 kcal/ml (Nutrison Paediatric Energy Plus). Venous blood samples for trace elements, vitamins, and minerals were taken at study entry and six months later. Parents kept three day food and feed records every month. RESULTS: Despite a median energy intake of only 75% EAR (range 52-158%), 67% (n = 8) achieved their reference nutrient intake (RNI) for all micronutrients. No significant micronutrient deficiencies were seen on blood analysis after six months. Eighty three per cent (n = 10) had vitamin B(12) and 92% (n = 11) had copper intake >150% RNI. Fifty eight per cent (n = 7) had high plasma B(12) (>733 micromol/l) and 75% (n = 9) had high serum copper (>22 micromol/l) concentrations. CONCLUSIONS: Children without excess losses maintain adequate micronutrient status on long term enteral feeding. Subjects had high blood concentrations of vitamin B(12) and copper, and had high dietary intakes of these micronutrients. We suggest that the maximum nutrient guidelines for paediatric enteral feeds should be more clearly defined.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)411-415
Number of pages5
JournalArchives of Disease in Childhood
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2002


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