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Am J Clin Nutr. 2000 Oct;72(4):1010-7.

Infant growth patterns in the slums of Dhaka in relation to birth weight, intrauterine growth retardation, and prematurity.

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  • 1International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR,B), Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Relations between size and maturity at birth and infant growth have been studied inadequately in Bangladesh, where the incidence of low birth weight is high and most infants are breast-fed.

OBJECTIVE:

This study was conducted to describe infant growth patterns and their relations to birth weight, intrauterine growth retardation, and prematurity.

DESIGN:

A total of 1654 infants born in selected low-socioeconomic areas of Dhaka, Bangladesh, were enrolled at birth. Weight and length were measured at birth and at 1, 3, 6, 9, and 12 mo of age.

RESULTS:

The infants' mean birth weight was 2516 g, with 46.4% weighing <2500 g; 70% were small for gestational age (SGA) and 17% were premature. Among the SGA infants, 63% had adequate ponderal indexes. The mean weight of the study infants closely tracked the -2 SD curve of the World Health Organization pooled breast-fed sample. Weight differences by birth weight, SGA, or preterm categories were retained throughout infancy. Mean z scores based on the pooled breast-fed sample were -2.38, -1. 72, and -2.34 at birth, 3 mo, and 12 mo. Correlation analysis showed greater plasticity of growth in the first 3 mo of life than later in the first year.

CONCLUSIONS:

Infant growth rates were similar to those observed among breast-fed infants in developed countries. Most study infants experienced chronic intrauterine undernourishment. Catch-up growth was limited and weight at 12 mo was largely a function of weight at birth. Improvement of birth weight is likely to lead to significant gains in infant nutritional status in this population, although interventions in the first 3 mo are also likely to be beneficial.

PMID:
11010945
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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