Nutrition in Pediatric Burns

Semin Plast Surg. 2024 Apr 4;38(2):125-132. doi: 10.1055/s-0044-1782648. eCollection 2024 May.


Nutrition and modulation of the hypermetabolic response to acute burns are reviewed in this article. Methods to determine caloric requirements are evaluated, including indirect calorimetry and predictive equations. Individual nutritional components of carbohydrates, fat, protein, vitamins, and trace elements are discussed specifically in relation to acute burn care. Selection of formula and route of administration are outlined, with an enteral high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet being preferable. Awareness and recognition of the signs and symptoms of malnutrition is critical in the management of variable caloric needs throughout hospitalization. Lastly, the catabolic state of acute burns is addressed through early excision and grafting and implementation of various pharmacologic agents, including growth hormone, insulin-like growth factor-1, insulin-like growth factor-binding protein-3, insulin, propranolol, and oxandrolone. Through a multipronged approach to nutrition, pediatric burn patients are provided the substrates for successful recovery and rehabilitation.

Keywords: enteral and parenteral nutrition; growth hormone; indirect calorimetry; insulin; insulin-like growth factor binding protein-3; malnutrition; oxandrolone; propranolol.

Publication types

  • Review