Journal 9, September 2006pages: 641-645
Premature very low birth weight (< 1500 g) infants are one of the largest groups receiving parenteral nutrition. PN should be optimized to answer their large nutritional requirements and suit their metabolic status, but should also be validated pharmaceutically. PN can be provided as a standard, usually commercial, formulation, representing the average needs of a large group of patients. Alternatively, an individualized PN compound adapted to the patient's needs can be prescribed and prepared, usually on a daily basis. The main advantage of individually prescribed PN is that it is tailored to suit a specific patient, thereby assuring the best possible nutrition and biochemical control. Batch-produced standardized PN bags can be readily available as ward stocks in neonatal intensive care units, enabling initiation of early PN immediately after the delivery of a premature infant. Moreover, standard PN solutions incorporate expert nutritional knowledge and support. A combination of standardized PN bags, prepared under strict standardization criteria, for most neonates, with a small number of specifically tailored individualized PN formulations for those in need for them, could reduce pharmacy workload and costs, and increase safety, while maintaining the desired clinical flexibility. For those in need of the individualized PN formulations, a computerized ordering system can save time, decrease prescription and compounding errors, and improve quality of nutritional care.
 PN = parenteral nutrition