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Journal of the Korean Society of Neonatology 1998;5(2):172-181.
Published online January 1, 2001.
Clinical Course and Treatment of Early Neonatal Hypocalcemia.
Kyung Tae Hwang, Jung Hyun Kim, Kyong Og Ko, Yun Duk Yoo
Department of Pediatrics, Sun General Hospital, Taejeon, Korea.
The clinical findings of early neonatal hypocalcemia are variable and it is difficult to find relationship between the symptoms and hypocalcemia due to complex causes. The purpose of this study is to establish the relationship between early neonatal hypocalcemia and clinical manifestations and to propose a guideline for appropriate treatment of early neonatal hypocalcemia, especially in asymptomatic cases.
Study subjects were all sick babies admitted to nursery and NICU and randornly selected 43 healthy babies at Sun General Hospital from January 1996 to December 1996. We examined serum calcium level within 72 hours after birth. Then we evaluated prospectively clinical findings according to each disease category in hypocalcemic cases and analysed the relationship of time course of clinical findings with hypocalcemia and compared serum calcium concentration followed by each therapy after 3 days.
The results were as follows. 1) The incidence of early neonatal hypocalcernia was high in premature infants, low birth weight infants, infants with neonatal asphyxia, hyaline membrane disease and transient tachypnea. 2) Tremor, seizure, apnea, dyspnea, abdominal distension, cyanosis, and vomiting were frequently presented symptoms in early neonatal hypocalcemia. 3) In the cases of early hypocalcemia with symptoms, these symptoms persisted continuously after norrnalization of serum calcium concentration. 4) Among asymptomatic hypocalcernic group, mean serum calcium levels changed from 6.7 mg/dL to 8.7 mg/dL in 23 cases of no treatment, from 5.4 mg/dL to 10.3 mg/dL in 4 cases of calcium gluconate infusion, and from 6.3 mg/dL to 8.7 mg/dL in 7 cases of feeding low phosphorus containing milk. None persisted in hypocalcemic state irrespective of treatment methods.
It is difficult to regard these symptoms as a rule to treatment because these symptoms were present after normalizaton of serum calcium concentration. In addition, asymptomatic hypocalcemia was improved shortly without any treatment without any problem. We conclude that for asymptomatic hypocalcemia, withholding dangerous calcium gluconate infusion would be perrnissible.
Key Words: Early neonatal hypocalcemia


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