FOR MANY years dextrose has been the principle agent used for supplying carbohydrates parenterally to the surgical patient. Basic caloric requirements can be met, protein catabolism reduced and some protection of the liver afforded if dextrose is given in sufficient quantity. However, prolonged infusions of huge volumes of fluid are required if the usual 5% solution is employed. The 10% solution has the disadvantage of causing diuresis and glycosuria, with resulting loss of essential water and calories. The combination of alcohol with dextrose, while effective, results in prolongation of the infusion time far beyond practical limits. Fat as a source of calories for parenteral administration is still in the experimental stage, though it may be in the future the answer to this problem.
In the search for a more suitable agent for parenteral nutrition invert sugar has been suggested. It was decided to compare its utilization with that of dextrose.