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Table 1 Characteristics of included studies

From: Arginine supplementation in prevention of necrotizing enterocolitis in the premature infant: an updated systematic review

Study ID Methods Participants Interventions Outcomes Allocation concealment
Amin et al.[30] Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, intention to treat basis Total 254 infants eligible for the study Study group: 1.5 mmol/kg per day L-arginine added to TPN. Once enteral feeds >40% TFI, L-arginine supplemented enterally Primary outcome – NEC, all stages Adequate
Total 152 enrolled
Masking of allocation – Yes Total 150 infants followed up, 1 died before commencing the study supplement, 1 was removed for IVH Grade ≥2 Control group: normal saline (same volume)
Masking of intervention – Yes
Masking of outcome assessment – Yes Excluded patients with severe congenital anomalies, congenital non-bacterial infection, evidence of IVH Grade ≥2 on cranial ultrasound by day 3 of life, conjugated hyperbilirubinemia, evidence of an inborn error of metabolism, exchange transfusion during the study period, or with pre-existing kidney failure
Completeness of follow-up – Yes Inclusion criteria – birth weight ≤1250 g and gestational age ≤32 weeks
Polycarpou et al. [31] Randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled Total 171 infants eligible for the study Study group: 1.5 mmol/kg per day liquid BID with NG feeds, from day 3–28 after birth. Primary outcome – NEC Adequate
Masking of allocation – Yes Total 83 enrolled Control group: 5% glucose in equivalent volume
Masking of intervention – Yes Total 83 infants followed up  
Masking of outcome assessment – Yes Excluded patients with severe congenital anomalies or inborn errors of metabolism.
Completeness of follow-up – Yes Did not exclude patients with IVH Grade Stage ≥ 2
Inclusion criteria – birth weight ≤ 1500 g and gestational age ≤ 34 weeks
  1. Abbreviations: IVH intraventricular hemorrhage, NEC necrotizing enterocolitis, NG Nasogastric, TFI total fluid intake, TPN total parenteral nutrition.