Comparison Between Sodium Acetate and Sodium Chloride in Parenteral Nutrition for Very Preterm Infants on the Acid-Base Status and Neonatal Outcomes

Pediatr Gastroenterol Hepatol Nutr. 2020 Jul;23(4):377-387. doi: 10.5223/pghn.2020.23.4.377. Epub 2020 Jul 3.


Purpose: To compare between sodium acetate (SA) and sodium chloride (SC) in parenteral nutrition (PN) with associated metabolic acidosis and neonatal morbidities in preterm infants.

Methods: Preterm infants below 33 weeks gestational age, and with a birth weight under 1,301 g were enrolled and further stratified into two groups: i) <1,000 g, or ii) ≥1,000 g in birth weight. The subjects were randomized to receive PN containing SA or SC within the first day of life. The results of routine blood investigations for the first 6 days of PN were collated, and the neonatal outcomes were recorded upon discharge or demise.

Results: Fifty-two infants entered the study, with 26 in each group: 29 infants had extremely low birth weight (ELBW). There were no significant differences in birth weight, gestation, sex, exposure to chorioamnionitis and antenatal steroids, surfactant doses and duration of mechanical ventilation between groups. The SA group had significantly higher mean pH and base excess (BE) from days 4 to 6 than the SC (mean pH, 7.36 vs. 7.34; mean BE -1.6 vs. -3.5 [p<0.01]), with a two-fold increase in the mean BE among ELBW infants. Significantly fewer on SA required additional bicarbonate (n=4 vs. 13, p=0.01). The rate of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) was approximately four-fold lower in SA than SC (n=3 vs. 11, p<0.01). No significant differences were observed in necrotizing enterocolitis, patent ductus arteriosus, retinopathy of prematurity, cholestatic jaundice, and mortality between groups.

Conclusion: The use of SA in PN was associated with reduced metabolic acidosis and fewer BPD.

Keywords: Acidosis; Bronchopulmonary dysplasia; Infant, premature; Parenteral nutrition; Sodium acetate; Sodium chloride.