Initial oral hydration with dilute apple juice followed by their preferred fluids, compared with electrolyte maintenance solution, resulted in fewer treatment failures among children with mild gastroenteritis. This according to a study of 647 children (mean age 28.3 months, 68.2% without evidence of dehydration) randomly assigned to receive color-matched half-strength apple juice/preferred fluid (n=323) or apple-flavored electrolyte maintenance solution (n=324). Oral rehydration therapy followed institutional protocols. Researchers found:
• Children who were administered dilute apple juice experienced treatment failure less often than those given electrolyte maintenance solution (16.7% vs 25.0%).
• Fewer children administered apple juice/preferred fluids received intravenous rehydration (2.5% vs 9.0%).
• Hospitalization rates and diarrhea and vomiting frequency were not significantly different between the groups.
Citation: Freedman SB, Willan AR, Boutis K, Schuh S. Effect of dilute apple juice and preferred fluids vs electrolyte maintenance solution on treatment failure among children with mild gastroenteritis. JAMA. 2016;315(18):1966-1974. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.5352.
1. King CK, Glass R, Bresee JS, Duggan C. Managing acute gastroenteritis among children. MMWR. 2003; 52(RR16):1-16.
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