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Eur J Pediatr. 1997 Apr;156(4):299-304.

Total energy expenditure in infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia is associated with respiratory status.

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University Children's Hospital Het Wilhelmina Kinderziekenhuis, Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Growth failure is a well-known problem in infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD). We studied BPD infants' total daily energy expenditure (Ee), nutritional balance, and growth in relation to their past and current clinical status. Applying the doubly labelled water technique, Ee was measured in nine preterm infants with BPD receiving supplemental oxygen (postnatal age 61 +/- 13 days) and nine matched controls (36 +/- 21 days) during a 6-day period. Energy and protein balance, past and present respiratory status, and growth were assessed as well. The results show that Ee was higher in the BPD infants compared to controls (73 +/- 9 vs 63 +/- 8 kcal/kg/day, P < 0.05), but their faecal energy loss was lower (P < 0.01). Weight gain, energy intake, energy cost of growth, protein retention, and physical activity were not different. The respiratory frequency (RR) in the BPD infants was elevated in comparison with controls (P < 0.01). Within the BPD group, RR was positively correlated with energy expenditure (regression equation: Ee [kcal/kg/day] = 26.3 + 0.71*RR [min-1]; r2 = 0.82, P < 0.001), and was the single most significant determinant of Ee.


Total energy expenditure in BPD infants is elevated and is strongly associated with their respiratory status. These findings could be of practical value for the nutritional management in infants with severe BPD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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