Introduction: Despite the continuing struggle, Bangladesh's under-five mortality rate is still high. However, Bangladesh has significantly reduced childhood mortality from 173 per thousand. The high level of neonatal deaths in Bangladesh is a great concern among all health professionals. Objective: This study aims to determine the frequency and pattern of electrolyte imbalance in neonates with septicemia and their impact on mortality and morbidity. Methods: All neonates suffering from septicemia and admitted to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) from 1 January 2011 to 15 September 2011 who fulfilled the inclusion criteria were evaluated. Results: During the study period, a total of 120 neonates were admitted with the diagnosis of septicemia in the Department of Neonatology, BSMMU, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Among the neonates, the mean age was 9.26 ± 4.58 days, mean weight 2282.68 ± 580.40 gm, and mean gestational age 35.68 ± 2.40 weeks; 66 were males (55%), and 54 were females (45%). Electrolyte abnormalities were found in 42 (35%) neonates with septicemia. Among the electrolyte abnormalities, hyponatremia was found in 24 (20%) neonates, hypernatremia in 12 (10%), hypokalemia in 17 (14.2%), hyperkalemia in 19 (15.8%), and mixed abnormalities in 18 (15%) cases. Neonates with dyselectrolytemia were found to be significantly associated with prolonged hospital stay compared to those with normal electrolyte levels (p < 0.05). Hyponatremia, hypokalemia, and mixed electrolyte abnormalities were significantly associated with higher mortality (p < 0.05). However, hypernatremia and hyperkalemia were not significantly associated with higher mortality (p > 0.05). Conclusion: Electrolyte abnormalities are common in neonates with septicemia. They contribute considerably to the higher mortality and prolonged hospital stay of neonates irrespective of the primary disease.
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