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Nutrition. 2004 Jun;20(6):528-35.

Parenteral nutrition practices in hospital pharmacies in Switzerland, France, and Belgium.

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Department of Clinical Nutrition, Geneva University Hospital, Geneva, Switzerland.



Important changes in administering total parenteral nutrition (PN) admixtures have occurred over the past decade. This study describes hospital pharmacists' practices in France (F), Switzerland (CH), and Belgium (B).


From the responses received using a standardized questionnaire, (n = 378) we determined the origin, types of container used, and choice of PN formula (standard versus tailor-made) and the type of quality control and the existence of nutrition support teams.


The mean response rates were 55.6% (CH), 30.5% (F), and 24.5% (B). Standard formulas were used mainly for adult patients (CH, 86%; F, 79%; B, 86%), whereas approximately 50% of tailor-made PN bags were used for children. Single-compartment or multicompartment bags or glass bottles contained standard formulas. Most standard formulas were provided by industry, apart from (B), where 50% of PN solutions were compounded by hospital pharmacies. Single-compartment bags contained generally tailor-made formulas produced exclusively by hospital pharmacies in (CH) and (B), whereas 33% were provided by industry in (F). Quality controls were mostly visual and occurred in 75% to 95% of hospitals. Nutrition support teams were present in 32% to 45% of hospitals.


The choice, origin, and type of container used for PN formulas were highly variable among countries. However, the use of standard formulas in bags was predominant in (CH) and (B). The function of nutrition support teams was similar in (F), (CH), and (B).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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