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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557


LIMA, Marilia C.; DANTAS, Henrique F.; AMORIM, Rosemary J. M.  and  LIRA, Pedro I. C.. Does fetal growth restriction influence body composition at school age?. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2011, vol.87, n.1, pp.29-35. ISSN 0021-7557.

OBJECTIVE: To assess the influence of low birth weight in full-term infants on body composition at school age. METHOD: This is a cross-sectional study nested in a cohort of 375 infants recruited at birth between 1993 and 1994 in the state of Pernambuco, Brazil. At 8 years of age, the body composition of 213 children from this cohort was assessed by measurement of triceps and subscapular skinfold thickness and mid upper arm circumference. Multivariable linear regression analysis was used to identify the influence of low birth weight, socioeconomic condition, maternal nutritional status, and child morbidity on triceps skinfold thickness. RESULTS: Mean triceps and subscapular skinfold thickness, mid upper arm circumference, and upper arm muscle and fat areas were lower in children born at term with low weight than in those with appropriate birth weight. However, these differences were not statistically significant. Multivariable linear regression analysis showed that the relative majority of variance in triceps skinfold thickness (12.3%) was explained by socioeconomic variables, particularly per capita family income (9.1%), followed by anemia and past hospitalization (which, together, explained 5.6% of variance) and maternal body mass index, which contributed toward 2.4% of this variance. Low birth weight had no influence on triceps subcutaneous fat deposition in this age group. CONCLUSION: Socioeconomic factors and a history of morbidity had a greater influence on body composition than low birth weight in schoolchildren born at term.

Keywords : Low birth weight; fetal growth retardation; skinfold thickness; body composition; nutritional status; cohort studies.

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