Objective: The objective of this study was to estimate the growth of pharmacological treatment-naïve polish boys with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Method: The sample included 135 boys (mean age: 11.67 years) with ADHD. The level of subjects' height, weight, and body mass index (BMI) was compared to the reference growth charts. Full estimation of measurement accuracy was provided. Regression analysis was used to estimate the biological and social factors contributing to the growth determination in the examined group.
Results: There were no statistically significant differences between mean body height of boys with ADHD and standards of growth of Polish children. Separate analyses for body height of the examined boys aged 6-10, 11-15, and 16-18 years also gave no statistically significant results. Mean body weight (z=0.28) and BMI (z=0.25) in the total cohort were statistically higher than the norm. After categorization of the boys according to age, statistically significant differences were demonstrated only for weight in the age range of 6-10 years (z=0.31) and for BMI in the age range of 11-15y (z=0.42). The regression analysis showed the strongest relation between the subjects' growth and the parents' body size, newborn's condition (birth, body weight, and APGAR score), factors connected with lifestyle, and socio-economic status of the family.
Conclusion: The study revealed that the height of drug-naïve boys with ADHD was not significantly different from the norm. The investigation also showed a tendency for greater body weight and BMI in boys with ADHD in comparison with the growth charts, which may be manifested also in greater risk of overweight and obesity in this group. The results of research suggest the necessity to control for such variables as genetic, perinatal, socioeconomic, and psychosocial factors, which may affect children's development, in future research on the growth of children with ADHD.