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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557On-line version ISSN 1678-4782


SILVA, Francislaine Veiga da et al. Nutritional evaluation of children with chronic cholestatic disease. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2016, vol.92, n.2, pp.197-205. ISSN 1678-4782.


To evaluate the nutritional status of children with persistent cholestasis and to compare the anthropometric indices between children with and without liver cirrhosis and children with and without jaundice.


Children with persistent cholestasis, i.e. increased direct bilirrubin or changes in the canalicular enzyme gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT), were included. The anthropometric measures were weight (W), height or length (H), arm circumference (AC), triceps skinfold thickness (TST), arm muscle circumference (AMC), and body mass index (BMI).


Ninety-one children with cholestasis, with current median age of 12 months, were evaluated. W/age (A) and H/A indices below −2 Z-scores were observed in 33% and 30.8% of patients, respectively. Concerning the W/H index and BMI, only 12% and 16% of patients, respectively, were below −2 Z-scores. Regarding AC, 43.8% of 89 evaluated patients had some depletion. Observing the TST, 64% of patients had depletion, and 71.1% of the 45 evaluated patients had some degree of depletion regarding the ACM index.


Evaluation using weight in patients with chronic liver diseases may overestimate the nutritional status due to visceromegaly, subclinical edema, or ascites. Indices that correlate weight and height, such as W/H and BMI, may also not show depletion because of the chronic condition in which there are depletion of both weight and height. TST, AC, and ACM are parameters that better estimate nutritional status and should be part of the management of patients with liver diseases and cholestasis.

Keywords : Neonatal cholestasis; Nutrition; Chronic liver disease; Anthropometry.

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