Neonatal Drug Therapy Manual

Sucrose 24%

Disclaimer: Official controlled document is the CHEO and Ottawa Hospital online copy. It is the responsibility of user to ensure that any paper copy version is the same as the online version before use.

Alternate Name(s): 
Dandlelion Kisses, Sweetums, Tootsweet
Original Date: 
July 2005
Revised Date: 
July 2021
  • Relief of pain during minimally invasive procedures according to criteria for use (refer to sucrose administration documents listed in references section)
  • PO
  • Administer sucrose 24% solution approximately 2 minutes prior to procedure. Place on the anterior tip of the tongue and offer non-nutritive sucking.



Sucrose Dose (mL)

All Newborn Infants who are NPO

0.2 mL (5 drops)

23 - 32 weeks

up to 0.5 mL

33 - 37 weeks

up to 1 mL

> 37 weeks up to 18 months

up to 2 mL


                                                                           (Daily maximum of 6 doses)


  • Palliative Care Symptom Management Protocol
Birthweight Dose
< 1000 g 0.1 mL q30min prn
> 1000 g up to 0.5 mL q30min prn


Side Effects: 
  • If patient acutely deteriorates following administration of sucrose, contact physician immediately
    • Sucrose should NOT be used in the following situations:
      • Infants with a known fructose or sucrose intolerance
      • Infants with Necrotizing Enterocolitis (NEC)
      • Infants who are unconscious, heavily sedated, those with absent gag reflex and unable to respond to handling
      • Infants who are asphyxiated or significantly depressed at birth until neurological recovery
      • Infants who are pharmacologically paralyzed


Parameters to Monitor: 
  • Pain scores, using a validated pain tool, should be obtained just prior to and following sucrose administration in order to evaluate its effectiveness.
Reconstitution and Stability: 
  • N/A
  • N/A

- The Ottawa Hospital (2017) Sucrose Administration For The Management Of Neonatal Procedural Pain

- The Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (2012 Revision). 24% Sucrose For Procedural Pain Management


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