PROBIOTICS Necrotizing enterocolitis causes significant morbidity among preterm infants; recent research suggests that probiotic treatment may help prevent NEC. This randomized controlled trial studied the effectiveness of probiotic, prebiotic, or synbiotic (probiotic + prebiotic) treatment in preventing NEC, and found that only probiotic and synbiotic treatment reduced the incidence of NEC among VLBWs, arguing against a beneficial effect of prebiotics alone. However, given the relatively low incidence of NEC, long-term follow up studies are essential to confirm the safety of this prophylactic treatment.
FORMULA Nutrition for extremely preterm infants is critical to growth and development. This randomized controlled trial examined the short-term outcomes of feeding these infants on an exclusively bovine or exclusively human milk diet, and found that an exclusive fortified human milk diet resulted in improved short-term outcomes, including a reduction in NEC and days on PN. Long-term follow up is essential to the conclusion of this trial that human milk PN is safe for extremely preterm infants.