Feeding problems, height and weight in different groups of disabled children

Acta Paediatr Scand. 1991 May;80(5):527-33. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.1991.tb11897.x.


Two hundred and twenty-one disabled children from seven diagnostic groups have been examined with respect to height, weight and prevalence of four different feeding problems. Retarded growth and feeding problems were common in children with cerebral palsy, mental retardation, congenital heart disease and deaf-blindness, but rare in children with esophagus atresia, cystic fibrosis and epilepsy. Mean relative height and weight were significantly lower (p much less than 0.01) in children with mechanical feeding problems, such as impairment of self-feeding skills and oral-motor dysfunction, than in children without these problems, regardless of diagnostic group. Mean relative weight was also significantly lower in children with poor appetite than in children with good appetite. Feeding problems contribute to short stature and underweight in severely disabled children.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Body Height / physiology*
  • Body Weight / physiology*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Disabled Persons*
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / etiology*
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Growth Disorders / etiology*
  • Growth Disorders / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male