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2022 Oct 06




External Validation of Equations to Estimate Resting Energy Expenditure in Critically Ill Children and Adolescents with and without Malnutrition: A Cross-Sectional Study.


We evaluated the validity of sixteen predictive energy expenditure equations for resting energy expenditure estimation (eREE) against measured resting energy expenditure using indirect calorimetry (REE) in 153 critically ill children. Predictive equations were included based on weight, height, sex, and age. The agreement between eREE and REE was analyzed using the Bland-Altman method. Precision was defined by the 95% limits of the agreement; differences > ±10% from REE were considered clinically unacceptable. The reliability was assessed by the intraclass correlation coefficient (Cronbach's alpha). The influence of anthropometric, nutritional, and clinical variables on REE was also assessed. Thirty (19.6%) of the 153 enrolled patients were malnourished (19.6%), and fifty-four were overweight (10.5%) or obese (24.8%). All patients received sedation and analgesia. Mortality was 3.9%. The calculated eREE either underestimated (median 606, IQR 512; 784 kcal/day) or overestimated (1126.6, 929; 1340 kcal/day) REE compared with indirect calorimetry (928.3, 651; 1239 kcal/day). These differences resulted in significant biases of -342 to 592 kcal (95% limits of agreement (precision)-1107 to 1380 kcal/day) and high coefficients of variation (up to 1242%). Although predicted equations exhibited moderate reliability, the clinically acceptable ±10% accuracy rate ranged from only 6.5% to a maximum of 24.2%, with the inaccuracy varying from -31% to +71.5% of the measured patient's energy needs. REE ( = 0.017) and eREE ( < 0.001) were higher in the underweight compared to overweight and obese patients. Apart from a younger age, malnutrition, clinical characteristics, temperature, vasoactive drugs, neuromuscular blockade, and energy intake did not affect REE and thereby predictive equations' accuracy. Commonly used predictive equations for calculating energy needs are inaccurate for individual patients, either underestimating or overestimating REE compared with indirect calorimetry. Altogether these findings underscore the urgency for measuring REE in clinical situations where accurate knowledge of energy needs is vital.