Premature Babies Can Be Cared for in the Maternity Ward without an Increased Risk and Discharged with a Feeding Tube If Necessary

Lea Rösch, Edda Hofstätter (Co-author), Franziska Krasnitzer-Leitner, Martin Wald* (Last author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalOriginal Article (Journal)peer-review

Abstract

In general, premature babies are discharged home when they reach full self-feeding. We established a discharge management protocol which allows for discharging late preterm babies with a feeding tube if necessary. This retrospective study included 108 preterm infants (34+ weeks) born in 2019 and 2020. The preterm infants discharged with a feeding tube (n = 32) were born at 35.23 weeks' gestation (±0.884), with a birth weight of 2423 g (±375.1), and were discharged at 7.22 days (±3.63) and had a weight of 3466 g (±591.3) at the first outpatient visit around the expected birth date. The preterm infants discharged without a feeding tube were born at 35.97 weeks' gestation (±0.702) with a birth weight of 2589 g (±424.84), discharged home at 6.82 days (±7.11) and a weight of 3784 g (±621.8) at the first outpatient visit. The gestational week and birth weight were statistically significantly different between the groups, with a p-value of <0.001 for each, and the length of hospital stay (p = 0.762) and weight at follow-up (p = 0.064) did not significantly differ. No infant required tube-feeding at the time of the first outpatient visit, i.e., the time of expected birth. Therefore, with well-thought-out management, it is possible and safe to discharge preterm infants home with a feeding tube.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCHILDREN-BASEL
Volume11
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Apr 2024

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