To assess the effects of dilute versus full strength formula on the incidence of necrotizing enterocolitis, feeding intolerance, weight gain, length of stay, and time to achieve full calorie intake in exclusively formula-fed preterm or low-birth-weight infants. A secondary objective was to assess the effects of different dilution strategies.

Low-birth-weight (<2500 g) and premature infants (gestational age <37 weeks) are at risk for nutritional deficiencies and feeding intolerance. The goal for these infants is to achieve similar growth as compared to the same gestational age infant in utero, but often the nutritional goals are not achieved in the extrauterine environment. Preterm and low-birth-weight infants are predisposed to vulnerabilities related to feeding. The premature or low-birth-weight infant has fewer nutrient reserves and is vulnerable to physiologic and metabolic stressors that may affect the infant’s ability to tolerate feeding and absorb nutrients for adequate growth....

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