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J Pediatr. 1998 Mar;132(3 Pt 1):478-85.

Growth status in children with cystic fibrosis based on the National Cystic Fibrosis Patient Registry data: evaluation of various criteria used to identify malnutrition.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine, Madison 53792, USA.



The objectives of this study were to determine growth status and to identify malnutrition with various anthropometric indicators in children with cystic fibrosis (CF) based on cross-sectional analysis of the 1993 National CF Patient Registry data.


Heights and weights of 13,116 children with CF were evaluated with percentile, percent of reference median, Z-score, and percent ideal weight-for-height based on National Center for Health Statistics/Centers for Disease Control growth references. Malnutrition was defined by four criteria: (1) height-for-age <5th percentile ("stunting") or weight-for-age <5th percentile ("wasting") (2) height-for-age <90% of reference median or weight-for-age <80% of reference median, (3) height-for-age <5th percentile or percent ideal weight-for-height <85%, and (4) height-for-age <90% of reference median or weight-for-height <85% of reference median.


Mean and median height- and weight-for-age were found to be at the 30th and 20th percentiles in children with CF. Malnutrition (height- or weight-for-age <5th percentile) was particularly pronounced in infants (47%) and adolescents (34%) and patients with newly diagnosed CF (44%). A significant sex difference (p < 0.01) in the occurrence of stunting (height-for-age <5th percentile) was observed during adolescence: boys 11 to 14 years of age showed lower occurrence of stunting (19%) compared with girls (29%), whereas the opposite trend was observed at 15 to 18 years (34% in male patients vs 28% in female patients).


Twenty percent of all children in the 1993 National CF Patient Registry were <5th percentile for height- or weight-for-age. A significant discrepancy was found when different criteria were used to distinguish "stunting" versus "wasting" in malnourished children with CF.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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