Children born small for gestational age are at high risk of developing insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, hyperlipidemia, hypertension and cardiovascular disease in adulthood. In addition, approximately 10% of SGA children do not achieve a normal adult height. Studies performed in SGA children to evaluate markers of metabolic disease in prepubertal, pubertal and adolescent subjects, indicate a higher prevalence of subtle endocrine and metabolic abnormalities that may precede the onset of overt disease in adulthood. At present, however, there are no conclusive data supporting the need of systematic close monitoring of GH-IGF, hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal and hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal axes, as well as insulin sensitivity, glucose homeostasis, and lipid metabolism. Monitoring of metabolic parameters should probably be reserved to SGA children with genetic predisposition to type 2 diabetes and hyperlipidemia, as early identification of metabolic alterations might prompt effective preventive interventions and, ultimately, reduce cardiovascular risk.
- Growth hormone
- Insulin sensitivity
- Intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR)
- Small for gestational age (SGA)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Biochemistry