European journal of clinical pharmacology vol:60 issue:5 pages:383-6
OBJECTIVE: To develop a safe and accurate method for the administration in the neonatal intensive care unit of several potent medications as a continuous infusion without overloading the infant, especially the very low birth weight (VLBW) infant by diluents. METHOD: The method designed is based on a weight-adapted solution limiting the diluent administration and allowing for a versatile modulation of dose administration. As this method was initially designed for VLBW infants, the point of departure of this method is a standard maximal fluid load of 0.3 ml/h for each medication, delivered in a low compliant circuit with a high-precision syringe driver. Solutions are made for 24 h, which is a compromise between drug stability and repeated pressure drops in the circuit when changing the syringe and administration set. To translate a prescription into a solution a conversion factor is calculated. In addition to the calculation principle, this conversion factor is given for a number of commonly used drugs in neonatal care. CONCLUSIONS: In our experience, the method described adds to the safety and accuracy of continuous drug administration in neonatal care.