Online ISSN: 2515-8260

Zinc Supplementation in Preterm Neonates for growth and Neurological Development

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1Dr. Anulata, 2Dr. Deepak Sugan Chand Bohara, 3Dr. Mamta Bajad, 4Dr. Kanwar Singh, 5Dr. Pukhraj Garg, 6Dr. Anil Jain


Background: Zinc is one of the most important trace elements for the body. It plays a major role in various aspects of physiology, immunity and skeletal growth. Zinc deficiency may be particularly relevant to early development, growth and function of many organ systems, including the neurologic system. Typical clinical manifestations are commonly observed only for conditions of severe zinc deficiency. Increasing data suggest significant subclinical effects of a moderate zinc deficiency in preterm neonate. Thus, this study was done to see the effect of zinc for growth and neurodevelopment in premature babies. Materials& Methods: The prospective cohort study was conducted in preterm neonate from December 2019 to December 2020 at Department of pediatrics J.L.N. Hospital & attached group of hospital Ajmer, Rajasthan, India. A total of initial 100 premature babies who fulfilled the inclusion criteria, were included in the study. We included infant born preterm (gestational age 30 to < 37 weeks) and low birth weight (birth weight 1000 to <2500 grams) who were admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit of pediatrics department. Zinc was given once daily till 3 months of age in the study group and follow up for 6 months. All 50 preterm neonates receiving Zinc supplementation included in group I. All 50 preterm neonates not receiving Zinc supplementation included in group II. Results: A total of 100 premature babies were enrolled for study out of which 50 (50%) in group I (zinc) and 50 (50%) in group II (non-zinc). Our study presents the successive p-values for Weight, Length and Head Circumference at Baseline, 1Month, 3 Month and 6Month intervals. Weight was not significant at the enrolment phase but in the first month, three month and six month was significant (P value <0.05) the difference in the means of group I and group II. In the case of Length, at baseline phase, the difference in means was not significant but in length at 1st month age (p-value 0.001), at 3rd month (pvalue 0.000), and at 6th month (p-value 0.001) were significantly in group I as compared to group II. The Mean of head circumference at different levels at enrolment (P-value 0.11), at 1st month of age (P-value 0.36), 3rd month (P-value 0.13) and 6th month (P-value 0.0.22) were not significant. However, there was no significant difference between zinc and control group in head circumference and neurodevelopmental score at age of 6- month. Conclusion: We concluded that enteral zinc supplementation in preterm infants at the dose of 2mg/kg/day for 3 months resulted in improved weight gain and linear growth till 6 months follow up. However, there was no significant difference between zinc and control group in head circumference and neurodevelopmental score at age of 6-month.

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