Zinc supplementation in preterm infants and growth indicators in a developing country

  • Risma Kerina Kaban Department of Child Health, University of Indonesia Medical School/Dr. Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital, Jakarta
  • Henri Azis HM Rabain Hospital, Muara Enim Regency, South Sumatra
  • Titis Prawitasari Department of Child Health, Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Indonesia/Dr. Cipto Mangunkusumo General Hospital, Jakarta
  • Ahmad Kautsar Department of Child Health, Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Indonesia/Dr. Cipto Mangunkusumo General Hospital, Jakarta
  • Setya Dewi Lusyati National Center for Women and Children’s Health Harapan Kita, Jakarta
  • Nadia Dwi Insani Fatmawati Central General Hospital, Jakarta
Keywords: zinc; preterm infant; growth indicators


Background  Zinc is one of the micronutrients that is found deficient in preterm infants. To date, no parenteral zinc supplements are available in Indonesia and there is no recommendation established for routine zinc supplementation in preterm infants.

Objective To evaluate the impact of zinc supplementation on growth indicators and morbidity in preterm infants.

Methods This double-blind, randomized controlled trial included preterm infants aged 28-32 weeks who were assigned to one of two groups: the first group received a 10 mg zinc supplementation, while the second (control) group received a placebo. At discharge or at a maximum of 40 weeks post-menstrual age (PMA, calculated from the first day of the mother's last menstrual period), the following were evaluated : growth indicators (weight, length, and head circumference), serum zinc level, zinc supplementation side effects, and morbidity rate (intraventricular hemorrhage/IVH, necrotizing enterocolitis/NEC, btonchopulmonary dysplasia/BPD). Data were analyzed with independent T-test using SPSS version 22 software.

Results Seventy-eight subjects were assigned to the zinc supplementation group and 76 subjects were assigned to the placebo group. Serum zinc level and mean body weight increment were significantly higher in the zinc group compared to the placebo group (P=0.00 and P=0.02, respectively). There were no significant differences between groups in mean body length or head circumference increment, nor in morbidity rate.

Conclusion  Preterm infants who received zinc supplementation have higher serum zinc level and mean body weight increment compared to the placebo group. No side effects are observed to have been caused by zinc supplementation.





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How to Cite
Kaban R, Azis H, Prawitasari T, Kautsar A, Lusyati S, Insani N. Zinc supplementation in preterm infants and growth indicators in a developing country. PI [Internet]. 20Nov.2023 [cited 22Feb.2024];63(6):443-. Available from: https://paediatricaindonesiana.org/index.php/paediatrica-indonesiana/article/view/3124
Received 2022-09-13
Accepted 2023-11-20
Published 2023-11-20