Refeeding syndrome: An overlooked condition?

  • Yuttiwat Vorakunthada
  • Passisd Laoveeravat
  • Wasawat Vutthikraivit
  • Weerapong Lilitwat
  • Ariwan Rakvit
Keywords: Refeeding syndrome, hypomagnesemia, hypokalemia, hypophosphatemia, malnourished patients, critically ill, nutrition


Refeeding syndrome (RFS) is commonly seen in different settings, particularly in the intensive care unit. However, it is not well recognized due to the lack of a standard definition. In general, hypophosphatemia is considered a diagnostic marker, but hypokalemia, hypomagnesemia, and shifts in thiamine and trace elements can also occur. Identification of high-risk patients is the key to prevention, especially in malnourished patients. Furthermore, introduction of oral, enteral, or parenteral nutrition in critically ill patients who have not received recent nutrition might lead to RFS. To date, there is no standard feeding protocol to prevent RFS. Therefore, awareness of RFS in high-risk patients, fluid and electrolyte treatment, and daily monitoring of clinical parameters are essential in the management of RFS.


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How to Cite
Vorakunthada, Y., Laoveeravat, P., Vutthikraivit, W., Lilitwat, W., & Rakvit, A. (2018). Refeeding syndrome: An overlooked condition?. The Southwest Respiratory and Critical Care Chronicles, 6(23), 4-9.