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What is the normal range of blood glucose concentrations in healthy term newborns?
  1. Richard Nicholl
  1. Report By Richard Nicholl, Consultant Neonatologist, Northwick Park Hospital, Northwest London NHS Hospitals Trust, UK

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You are the attending neonatal consultant. It is 6 pm on a Friday after a busy week on the unit. A rather flustered midwife appears from the postnatal ward with a baby and two anxious parents. The baby is full term and appropriately grown, following a normal vaginal delivery and just 8 hours old. Mum has been attempting to breast feed but the baby is reported to have been “not feeding well” and “jittery”. There are no prenatal risk factors for sepsis. Your examination of the baby is normal—he is now not “jittery”.

A capillary heel prick blood test (Medisense) done on the postnatal ward has given a blood glucose reading of 2.6 mmol.

Because this result is perceived to be abnormal (low), one of the neonatal trainees has suggested to …

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