Evid Based Nurs 5:74 doi:10.1136/ebn.5.3.74
  • Treatment

A semidemand feeding protocol reduced time to full oral feeding in healthy preterm infants

 QUESTION: In healthy preterm infants, is a semidemand feeding protocol more effective than the standard practice of scheduled feedings for reducing the time to attain full oral feeding and maintaining a satisfactory weight gain?


Randomised (unclear allocation concealment), unblinded controlled trial with {follow up to attainment of full oral feeding}*.


2 neonatal intensive care units in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.


89 preterm infants who were 32 to ≤34 weeks postconceptional age and appropriate for gestational age. Infants with congenital anomalies, gastrointestinal conditions, neurological diagnoses, or grade III/IV intracranial haemorrhage were excluded. 81 infants (91%) completed the study (mean postconceptional age at study entry 32 wks, 53% boys).


44 infants were allocated to a semidemand feeding protocol. 10 minutes of non-nutritive sucking (NNS) were provided every 3 hours, followed up by an assessment of behavioural state (modified Anderson Behavioral State scale). If the infant was judged to be in a state of restlessness or wakefulness (scores ≥3), an oral feeding was offered. If the infant was in a sleep state, he was allowed to …

Free Sample

This recent issue is free to all users to allow everyone the opportunity to see the full scope and typical content of EBN.
View free sample issue >>

EBN Journal Chat

The EBN Journal Chat offers readers the opportunity to participate in discussion about research articles and commentaries from Evidence Based Nursing (EBN).

How to participate >>

Don't forget to sign up for content alerts so you keep up to date with all the articles as they are published.

Navigate This Article