Brain mass estimation by head circumference and body mass methods in neonatal glycaemic modelling and control
Introduction: Hyperglycaemia is a common complication of stress and prematurity in extremely low-birth-weight infants. Model-based insulin therapy protocols have the ability to safely improve glycaemic control for this group. Estimating non-insulin-mediated brain glucose uptake by the central nervous system in these models is typically done using population-based body weight models, which may not be ideal. Method: A head circumference-based model that separately treats small-for-gestational-age (SGA) and appropriate-for-gestational-age (AGA) infants is compared to a body weight model in a retrospective analysis of 48 patients with a median birth weight of 750g and median gestational age of 25 weeks. Estimated brain mass, model-based insulin sensitivity (SI) profiles, and projected glycaemic control outcomes are investigated. SGA infants (5) are also analyzed as a separate cohort. Results: Across the entire cohort, estimated brain mass deviated by a median 10% between models, with a per-patient median difference in SI of 3.5%. For the SGA group, brain mass deviation was 42%, and per-patient SI deviation 13.7%. In virtual trials, 87-93% of recommended insulin rates were equal or slightly reduced (δ<0.16mU/h) under the head circumference method, while glycaemic control outcomes showed little change. Conclusion: The results suggest that body weight methods are not as accurate as head circumference methods. Head circumference-based estimates may offer improved modelling accuracy and a small reduction in insulin administration, particularly for SGA infants. © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.