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Current neonatal practice involves weekly blood sampling of growing stable preterm infants to assess liver, bone and haematological variables and identify signs of osteopenia and anaemia of prematurity. There are few data, however, to support this practice, with much evidence of increased transfusion requirements in this vulnerable population secondary to phlebotomy losses.1 Recently, point-of-care analysers have been validated to decrease phlebotomy losses and minimise the need for transfusion in this population.2 We hypothesised that the results of weekly blood investigations in stable growing preterm …
Competing interests: None declared.
Presented in part at the Society for Pediatric Research, Toronto, May 2007