Newborns feel pain.  The neurobiological system necessary for the perception of pain is formed between the 24th and 28th week of gestation, when the peripheral and central structures necessary to feel pain are present and functioning.  Newborn infants may feel pain more intensely than older children and adults because their inhibitory control mechanisms are immature, which limits their capacity to modulate the painful experience.

Treatment of procedural pain in newborns is desirable because they are more sensitive to pain than adults and repeated acute pain periods in neonates result in long-term behavioural changes.

Intensive pain should be managed with pharmacological agents, whereas less severe pain can be managed by means of non-pharmacological relief and prevention methods.

A selection of non-pharmacological interventions are used for pain relief in neonates, such as for, example, giving pacifiers, changing position, cradling in the arms, swaddling, maintaining the body in a curved position, giving postural support and reducing tactile stimulation. They have all been used more or less successfully for pain management.

A number of well-conducted studies have shown that highly concentrated, sweet-tasting solutions given orally before the intervention can reduce pain among newborns undergoing heel stick, vaccination, venopuncture (recommended method for blood sampling in full term newborn. Its advantages include an increased sample volume, greater efficacy, and less pain compared with heel stick), other painful cutaneous procedures and many other “routine” procedures.

In concertation with European Neonatologists, EPMC Pharma designed and developed SUCROSE 24% EPMC PHARMA: the only sucrose solution ready for use and sterile.

SUCROSE 24% is a 24% aqueous sterile oral solution of sucrose packaged in unit doses of 2 ml containing 1.5 ml of sterile solution.

SUCROSE 24% is produced in Europe under GMP conditions and is available in 100 units packs.