Volume 22, Issue 4 p. 377-388
Invited Review

Indirect Calorimetry: A Practical Guide for Clinicians

Heather A. Haugen PhD

Corresponding Author

Heather A. Haugen PhD

University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, School of Medicine, Denver, Colorado; and the

Correspondence: Heather Haugen, 570 Chadwick Circle, High-lands Ranch, CO 80129. Electronic mail may be sent to [email protected].Search for more papers by this author
Lingtak-Neander Chan PharmD, BCNSP

Lingtak-Neander Chan PharmD, BCNSP

University of Washington, School of Pharmacy

Graduate Program in Nutritional Sciences, Seattle, Washington

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Fanny Li PharmD

Fanny Li PharmD

University of Washington, School of Pharmacy

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First published: 01 August 2007
Citations: 250

Abstract

This review provides clinicians with a comprehensive overview of indirect calorimetry including the principles, methodology, technologic advancements, benefits, and challenges. Clinical applications for indirect calorimetry and the potential limitations are specifically addressed for both the inpatient and outpatient setting. Measurement of energy expenditure is the most accurate method to assess energy needs. Indirect calorimetry remains a gold standard in measuring energy expenditure in the clinical settings. The benefits of providing optimal nutrition for recovery from illness and chronic health management are well documented. Indirect calorimetry offers a scientifically-based approach to customize a patient's energy needs and nutrient delivery to maximize the benefits of nutrition therapy. With recent advances in technology, indirect calorimeters are easier to operate, more portable, and affordable. Increased utilization of indirect calorimetry would facilitate individualized patient care and should lead to improved treatment outcomes.