To determine the effects of different doses of prophylactic dextrose gel on glycemic stability assessed using continuous glucose monitoring in the first 48 hours when given to babies at risk of neonatal hypoglycemia.

Continuous glucose monitoring was undertaken for the first 48 hours in 133 infants at risk of hypoglycemia who participated in the pre-hPOD randomized dosage trial of dextrose gel prophylaxis. Low glucose concentrations were detected in 41% of infants by blood glucose monitoring and 68% by continuous interstitial glucose monitoring. The mean ± SD duration of low interstitial glucose concentrations was 295 ± 351 minutes in the first 48 hours. Infants who received any dose of dextrose gel seemed to be less likely than those who received placebo gel to experience low glucose concentrations (<47 mg/dL [2.6 mmol/L]; P = .08), particularly if they received a single dose of 200 mg/kg (relative risk, 0.70; 95% CI, 0.50-0.10; P = .049). They also spent a greater proportion of time in the central glucose concentration range of 54-72 mg/dL (3-4 mmol/L). Dextrose gel did not increase recurrent or severe episodes of low glucose concentrations and did not increase the peak glucose concentration. These effects were similar for all trial dosages.

Low glucose concentrations were common in infants at risk of hypoglycemia despite blood glucose monitoring and treatment. Prophylactic dextrose gel reduced the risk of hypoglycemia without adverse effects on glucose stability.

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