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N Engl J Med. 1983 Sep 29;309(13):764-70.

Chronic fructose intoxication after infancy in children with hereditary fructose intolerance. A cause of growth retardation.


In two unrelated boys, 5.3 and 3.8 years of age with hereditary fructose intolerance, apparently isolated growth retardation (-2.71 S.D. and -2.40 S.D.) occurred after infancy, even though acute symptomatic fructose intoxication was prevented by restriction of dietary fructose. When more stringent restriction of dietary fructose was instituted (approximately 40 mg per kilogram of body weight per day), growth velocity increased from the 25th to the 97th percentile in one child and from well below the 3d to above the 75th percentile in the other. When restriction of dietary fructose was experimentally relaxed (from 10 to 250 mg per kilogram per day), neither boy had symptoms, hypoglycemia, or evidence of hepatic or renal dysfunction, but both had sustained hyperuricemia and hyperuricosuria and increases in the plasma concentration and urinary excretion of magnesium. We conclude that in patients with hereditary fructose intolerance, clinically important chronic fructose intoxication can occur after infancy without causing symptoms of acute fructose intoxication and can be expressed as an apparently isolated, reversible retardation of somatic growth with a continuing disorder of adenine nucleotide metabolism, characterized in part by recurrently increased rates of degradation of adenine nucleotides.

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