Primum non nocere: earlier cessation of glucose monitoring is possible

Celine Blank, Jeroen van Dillen, Marije Hogeveen (Corresponding author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
39 Downloads (Pure)


Newborns are at relatively high risk for developing hypoglycaemia in the first 24 h after birth. Well-known risk factors are prematurity, small for gestational age (SGA) or large for gestational age (LGA), and maternal pre-existent or gestational diabetes mellitus. Prolonged hypoglycaemia is associated with poor neurodevelopmental outcomes; hence, prevention through proper monitoring and treatment is important. Given the ongoing debate concerning frequency and duration of screening for neonatal hypoglycaemia, therefore, we investigated the frequency and duration of glucose monitoring safe to discover neonatal hypoglycaemia in different risk groups. Data of newborns at risk for hypoglycaemia were retrospectively collected and analysed. Blood glucose concentrations were measured 1, 3, 6, 12, and 24 h after birth. Moderate hypoglycaemia was defined as a blood glucose concentration of < 2.2 mM and severe hypoglycaemia as a concentration of < 1.5 mM. Of 1570 newborns, 762 (48.5%) had at least one episode of hypoglycaemia in the first 24 h after birth; 30.6% of them had severe hypoglycaemia (all in the first 9 h after birth). Only three SGA and two LGA newborns had a first moderate asymptomatic hypoglycaemic episode beyond 12 h after birth. The incidence of hypoglycaemia increased with accumulation of multiple risk factors.

CONCLUSION: Safety of limiting the monitoring to 12 h still has to be carefully evaluated in the presence of SGA or LGA newborns; however, our results suggest that 12 h is enough for late preterm newborns (> 34 weeks) and maternal diabetes. What is Known: • Newborns are at relatively high risk for developing hypoglycaemia and such hypoglycaemia is associated with adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes. • Proper glucose monitoring and prompt treatment in case of neonatal hypoglycaemia are necessary. What is New: • Glucose monitoring 12 h after birth is proficient for most newborns at risk. • Maternal diabetes leads to the highest risk of early neonatal hypoglycaemia and newborns with more than one risk factor are at increased risk of hypoglycaemia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1239-1245
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Pediatrics
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2018


  • Glucose monitoring
  • Neonatal hypoglycaemia
  • Newborns
  • Screening
  • Blood Glucose/metabolism
  • Humans
  • Risk Factors
  • Male
  • Incidence
  • Monitoring, Physiologic
  • Time Factors
  • Biomarkers/blood
  • Female
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Hypoglycemia/blood
  • Infant, Newborn


Dive into the research topics of 'Primum non nocere: earlier cessation of glucose monitoring is possible'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this