Anthropometrics and fat mass, but not fat-free mass, are compromised in infants requiring parenteral nutrition after neonatal intestinal surgery

Lotte E. Vlug, Esther G. Neelis, Jonathan C.K. Wells, Mary S. Fewtrell, Wendy L.M. Kastelijn, Joanne F. Olieman, Marijn J. Vermeulen, Jorine A. Roelants, Dimitris Rizopoulos, René M.H. Wijnen, Edmond H.H.M. Rings, Barbara A.E. de Koning*, Jessie M. Hulst

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
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BACKGROUND: Children with intestinal failure (IF) receiving long-term parenteral nutrition (PN) have altered body composition (BC), but data on BC changes from start of PN onwards are lacking. OBJECTIVES: We aimed to assess growth and BC in infants after neonatal intestinal surgery necessitating PN and at risk of IF, and to explore associations with clinical parameters. METHODS: A prospective cohort study in infants after intestinal surgery. IF was defined as PN dependency for >60 d. SD scores (SDS) for anthropometry were calculated until 6-mo corrected age. In a subgroup, fat mass (FM) and fat-free mass (FFM) were measured with air-displacement plethysmography at 2- and 6-mo corrected age. SDS for length-adjusted FM index and FFM index were calculated. Associations between cumulative amount of PN and BC parameters were analyzed with linear mixed-effect models. RESULTS: Ninety-five neonates were included (54% male, 35% born <32 wk) and 39 infants (41%) had IF. Studied infants had compromised anthropometric parameters during follow-up. At 6-mo corrected age, they remained smaller (median weight-for-age SDS -0.9 [IQR -1.5, 0.1], P < 0.001) than the normal population. In 57 infants, 93 BC measurements were performed. FM index SDS was lower than in healthy infants at 2- and 6-mo corrected age (-0.9 [-1.6, -0.3], P < 0.001 and -0.7 [-1.3, 0.1], P = 0.001, respectively), but FFM index SDS did not differ. A higher cumulative amount of PN predicted a higher FM index in female infants but lower FM index in male infants. CONCLUSIONS: In this cohort of infants receiving PN after intestinal surgery, compromised anthropometrics, decreased FM, and adequate FFM were observed during the first 6 mo. Male and female infants seemed to respond differently to PN when it comes to FM index. Continuing growth monitoring after the age of 6 mo is strongly recommended, and further research should explore the benefit of incorporating ongoing BC monitoring during follow-up.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)503-513
Number of pages11
JournalThe American journal of clinical nutrition
Issue number2
Early online date4 Dec 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2022

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Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Author(s) 2021. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Society for Nutrition.


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