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Australas Phys Eng Sci Med. 1993 Sep;16(3):129-36.

Development of a paediatric indirect calorimeter.

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James Fairfax Institute of Paediatric Clinical Nutrition, Royal Alexandra Hospital for Children, Camperdown, Sydney, Australia.


An indirect calorimeter was developed to measure resting energy expenditure (REE) and respiratory quotient (RQ) in a clinical paediatric population. The design is suitable for any child spontaneously breathing room air. Measurements are possible from small babies to large hypermetabolic adolescents due to the ability to set and control flow from the patient headbox across the range 2-40 l/min. The calorimeter is mobile, it is electrically safe and the patient interface may be disinfected. An alcohol burning technique, that can emulate a clinical test for children of various sizes, is used to check the system, which has a high level of accuracy across a range of conditions. The indirect calorimeter has been successfully used to measure a large number of children of different sizes.

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