A prospective 10-year study on children who had severe infantile colic

Acta Paediatr Suppl. 2005 Oct;94(449):129-32. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.2005.tb02169.x.


Aim: To evaluate the association between infantile colic and gastrointestinal, allergic and psychological disorders in childhood.

Methods: A prospective study was conducted on 103 infants aged 31-87 d. After 10 y, between 2001 and 2003, the children were recalled and a paediatrician evaluated the selected disorders by anamnesis, medical examination, laboratory tests and parent interviews.

Results: Of the 103 infants enrolled, 96 completed the study. There was an association between infantile colic and recurrent abdominal pain (p=0.001) and allergic disorders: allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis, asthmatic bronchitis, pollenosis, atopic eczema and food allergy (p<0.05). Sleep disorders, fussiness, aggressiveness and feelings of supremacy are more frequent in children who suffered from colic during early infancy (p<0.05). A family history of gastrointestinal diseases and atopic diseases was significantly higher in infants with colic than in controls (p<0.05).

Conclusion: Susceptibility to recurrent abdominal pain, allergic and psychological disorders in childhood may be increased by infantile colic. Our findings confirm that severe infantile colic might be the early expression of some of the most common disorders in childhood.

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain / epidemiology
  • Colic / epidemiology
  • Colic / physiopathology*
  • Colic / prevention & control
  • Female
  • Food Hypersensitivity / epidemiology
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / epidemiology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Recurrence
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Time Factors