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Growth retardation and undernutrition in children with spastic cerebral palsy

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Aim: To assess the prevalence of growth retardation and undernutrition in a homogenous group of 30 children with spastic cerebral palsy. Methods: Standard anthropometric assessment and functional assessment of feeding ability. Results: Growth retardation was common and severe: mean length for age standard deviation score (SDS) was −2.1 (SD 1.0) and 60% of the sample were «stunted». Mean weight for height SDS was +0.2 (SD 0.9) and «wasting» was largely confined to those children identified as having feeding problems. Conclusion: Formal assessment of growth and nutritional status is indicated in children with cerebral palsy, even if health and feeding status would otherwise give little cause for concern.

Keywords: nutritional assessment; stunting; undernutrition; wasting

Document Type: Original Article


Affiliations: 1: University of Glasgow Department of Human Nutrition, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Glasgow 2: Corseford Residential School, Howwood Road, Kilbarchan, Renfrewshire 3: Department of Paediatric Neurology and Child Development, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Glasgow, UK

Publication date: January 1, 1996

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