Overcoming challenges to enteral nutrition delivery in critical care.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Existing data and all ICU nutrition guidelines emphasize enteral nutrition (EN) represents a primary therapy leading to both nutritional and non-nutritional benefits. Unfortunately, iatrogenic malnutrition and underfeeding is virtually ubiquitous in ICUs worldwide for prolonged periods post-ICU admission. Overcoming essential challenges to EN delivery requires addressing a range of real, and frequently propagated myths regarding EN delivery. RECENT FINDINGS: Key recent data addresses perceived challenges to EN including: Adequately resuscitated patients on vasopressors can and likely should receive trophic early EN and this was recently associated with reduced mortality; Patients paralyzed with neuromuscular blocking agents can and should receive early EN as this was recently associated with reduced mortality/hospital length of stay; Proned patients can safely receive EN; All ICU nutrition delivery, including EN, should be objectively guided by indirect calorimetry (IC) measures. This is now possible with the new availability of a next-generation IC device. SUMMARY: It is the essential implementation of this new evidence occurs to overcome real and perceived EN challenges. This data should lead to increased standardization/protocolization of ICU nutrition therapy to ensure personalized nutrition care delivering the right nutrition dose, in the right patient, at the right time to optimize clinical outcome.
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