Background: Many preterm infants are significantly growth restricted at hospital discharge and are at increased risk for long-term growth failure. Aims: To compare growth and weight gain composition after term between preterm infants who were growth retarded and those who were not. Study design: An observational longitudinal study was conducted. Subjects: 35 preterm infants who showed growth retardation at term (group 1) and 26 preterm infants who did not (group 2). Outcome measures: Growth and body composition were assessed at term and at 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 months of corrected age. Results: At term, and at 1, 2, and 3 months of corrected age, growth-retarded infants showed significantly lower body weight and fat mass than infants who did not develop growth retardation. The mean energy and protein intakes did not differ significantly between the two groups. Daily increases in body weight and fat mass between term and three months did not differ between the groups. However, during the fourth and fifth months, daily gains of body weight and fat mass were significantly greater in growth-retarded than in non-growth-retarded infants, and as a result, body weight and fat mass were comparable between the two groups at 4 and 5 months of corrected age. Conclusions: In terms of growth parameters and body composition, growth-retarded preterm infants recovered from postnatal growth failure within the fourth month of corrected age.
- Body composition
- Growth retardation
- Preterm infants
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health