Catch-up growth after long-term implementation and weaning from ketogenic diet in pediatric epileptic patients

Clin Nutr. 2013 Feb;32(1):98-103. doi: 10.1016/j.clnu.2012.05.019. Epub 2012 Jun 30.


Background & aims: To assess the presence of growth retardation during long-term implementation of ketogenic diet (KD) among children with epilepsy, and verify the presence of catch-up growth in same patients 1 year after diet discontinuation.

Methods: Retrospective chart review of 20 males and 20 females was performed and z scores of height, weight and body mass index was obtained at baseline, 2 years into KD, and 1 year after discontinuation of KD.

Results: Our analysis revealed significant reduction in both height and weight gain among children with epilepsy after prolonged KD. After a year of diet discontinuation, significant catch-up growth was evident in both height and weight. In regard to specific subsets, ambulation had favorable influence on growth during KD and after diet discontinuation. Uncontrolled epilepsy, and younger age at the start of KD contributed a negative impact on a child's growth.

Conclusions: This preliminary observation into long-term growth pattern among recipients of KD will aid both health care providers and patients alike in planning for long-term care extending beyond the duration of dietary treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Body Height*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight
  • Child
  • Child Development*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Diet, Ketogenic / adverse effects*
  • Drug Resistance
  • Epilepsy / diet therapy*
  • Epilepsy / drug therapy
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Growth Disorders / epidemiology
  • Growth Disorders / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Medical Records
  • Mobility Limitation
  • Republic of Korea / epidemiology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Weight Gain*