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J Rheumatol. 2008 Nov;35(11):2265-71. Epub 2008 Oct 1.

Growth velocity and interleukin 6 concentrations in juvenile idiopathic arthritis.

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Division of Rheumatology, Hospital de ClĂ­nicas de Porto Alegre, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil.



.To evaluate associations of growth velocity with inflammatory markers and cumulative dose of glucocorticoid in a cohort of patients with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) followed during 1 year.


Seventy-nine patients were evaluated. Disease activity was evaluated by a pediatric rheumatologist. Anthropometric data were classified according to the World Health Organization standards. Tanner growth velocity curves were used; values below the Z-score < or = -2 were considered low growth velocity. Serum concentrations of interleukin 6 (IL-6) were measured by ELISA, and values > 1 pg/ml were considered elevated.


The prevalence of low growth velocity was 25.3%, and it was associated with active disease on followup visit, elevated IL-6, erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein, and higher cumulative glucocorticoid doses. In the multiple linear regression with growth velocity as the dependent variable, only elevated IL-6 level was independently and negatively associated with growth velocity.


Low growth velocity is highly prevalent in children with JIA. Elevated IL-6 levels seem to have an important negative influence on growth in these children, while total glucocorticoid exposure appears to be a secondary factor.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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