Feeding tolerance in preterm infants on noninvasive respiratory support

J Perinat Neonatal Nurs. 2014 Oct-Dec;28(4):300-4. doi: 10.1097/JPN.0000000000000063.


To evaluate differences in feeding tolerance between infants maintained on continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) and those receiving high-flow (nasal) cannula (HFC) with or without CPAP. This is a retrospective, cross-sectional study. Two groups of very low-birth-weight infants (750-1500 g) were compared on the basis of respiratory support: (1) infants born between the January 2002 and December 2004 treated with CPAP; and (2) infants born between January 2005 and December 2006 treated with HFC with or without CPAP. The groups were compared to determine which of the two attained full feedings sooner. Successful achievement of full feedings was measured in days from birth and defined by discontinuation of hyperalimentation-supplementation and attainment of 120 mL/kg/d of enteral feedings. A total of 185 infants met inclusion criteria (103 who received CPAP exclusively and 82 who received HFC with or without CPAP). There was no statistical difference in time to full enteral feedings between the 2 groups. There was also no difference in time of initiation of oral feeding or days to full oral feedings between 2 groups. The use of HFC was not associated with changes in feeding tolerance in premature infants. Further studies are needed to investigate efficacy and potential advantages and disadvantages to the use of HFC in the very low-birth-weight infant population.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Continuous Positive Airway Pressure / methods*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Enteral Nutrition* / adverse effects
  • Enteral Nutrition* / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature*
  • Infant, Very Low Birth Weight / physiology*
  • Length of Stay
  • Male
  • Parenteral Nutrition, Total* / adverse effects
  • Parenteral Nutrition, Total* / methods
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Weight Gain