Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Surgery & Cancer

Professor of Critical Care



+44 (0)20 3313 4521stephen.brett Website




Hammersmith House 570Hammersmith HospitalHammersmith Campus






BibTex format

author = {Wandrag, L and Brett, SJ and Frost, G and To, M and Loubo, E and Jackson, N and Umpleby, M and Bountziouka, V and Hickson, M},
doi = {10.1186/s13063-019-3639-2},
journal = {Trials},
title = {Leucine-enriched essential amino acid supplementation in mechanically ventilated trauma patients – a feasibility study},
url = {},
volume = {20},
year = {2019}

RIS format (EndNote, RefMan)

AB - Background: Critically ill patients lose up to 2% muscle mass per day. We assessed the feasibility of administering a leucine-enriched essential amino acid (L-EAA) supplement to mechanically ventilated trauma patients with the aim of assessing the effect on skeletal muscle mass and function. Methods: A randomised feasibility study was performed over 6 months in intensive care (ICU), patients received 5g L-EAA five times per day in addition to standard feed (L-EAA group) or standard feed only (control group) up to 14 days. CRP, albumin, IL-6, IL-10, urinary 3-MH, nitrogen balance, protein turnover ([1-13C] leucine infusion), muscle depth change (ultrasound), functional change (Katz & Barthel indices) and muscle strength Medical Research Council (MRC) sum score to assess ICU Acquired Weakness, were measured sequentially.Results: Eight patients (9.5% of screened patients) were recruited over 6 months. L-EAA doses were provided on 91/124 (73%) occasions. Inflammatory and urinary marker data were collected; serial muscle depth measurements were lacking due to short length of stay. Protein turnover studies were performed on five occasions. MRC-sum score could not be performed as patients were not able to respond to the screening questions. The Katz & Barthel indices did not change. L-EAA delivery was achievable, but meaningful functional and muscle mass outcome measures require careful consideration in the design of a future RCT. Conclusion: L-EAA was practical to provide, but we found significant barriers to recruitment and measurement of the chosen outcomes which would need to be addressed in the design of a future, large randomised controlled trial.
AU - Wandrag,L
AU - Brett,SJ
AU - Frost,G
AU - To,M
AU - Loubo,E
AU - Jackson,N
AU - Umpleby,M
AU - Bountziouka,V
AU - Hickson,M
DO - 10.1186/s13063-019-3639-2
PY - 2019///
SN - 1745-6215
TI - Leucine-enriched essential amino acid supplementation in mechanically ventilated trauma patients – a feasibility study
T2 - Trials
UR -
UR -
VL - 20
ER -