HENRY D. COVELLI, M.D.; J. WAYLON BLACK, M.D.; MICHAEL S. OLSEN, M.D.; JEROME F. BEEKMAN, M.D.
Acute respiratory failure developed in three patients needing ventilatory support within hours after total parenteral nutrition was started. We postulate that the high carbohydrate load provided in the parenteral solution resulted in the use of glucose as the primary energy source, with the development of substantial increases in the carbon dioxide production and the respiratory quotient. Because these patients had a relatively fixed ventilatory response, hypercapnia ensued. Excessive carbohydrate loading may precipitate respiratory acidosis in patients unable to adequately improve their alveolar ventilation when compensating for increased carbon dioxide production.
COVELLI HD, BLACK JW, OLSEN MS, BEEKMAN JF. Respiratory Failure Precipitated by High Carbohydrate Loads. Ann Intern Med. ;95:579–581. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-95-5-579
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1981;95(5):579-581.
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