The mechanisms underlying growth failure in infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia are poorly understood. Thirteen infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia at 6 months of corrected age and 12 full-term healthy control infants matched for age or size were studied. Resting oxygen consumption was measured during natural sleep, and an estimation of the resting metabolic expenditure by indirect calorimetry was performed. Growth parameters were measured, and a nutritional profile including dietary intake, stool analysis, and serum albumin, cholesterol, glucose, and prealbumin was obtained. Seven of the 13 infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia had growth failure (defined as length and weight less than the tenth percentile of the Babson growth curves). These infants had lower birth weight, lower gestational age, and a greater number of days spent in supplemental oxygen or on mechanical ventilation. There was no statistical difference between the bronchopulmonary dysplasiagrowth failure and bronchopulmonary dysplasia-normal growth infants for dietary intake or stool or serum analyses. However, serum prealbumin showed a significant linear correlation with body weight in infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia. Resting metabolic expenditure was elevated in infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia with growth failure and was inversely correlated with body weight in all infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia. Thus, infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia and growth failure have increased metabolic demands and decreased prealbumin values suggesting a relative state of protein-calorie malnutrition.
- Received April 13, 1987.
- Accepted June 2, 1987.
- Copyright © 1988 by the American Academy of Pediatrics