The Turkish Journal of Pediatrics 2010 , Vol 52 , Num 1
Somatic growth after corrective surgery for congenital heart disease
Departments of 1Pediatrics and 2Cardiovascular Surgery, Başkent University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara and İstanbul, Turkey We report the somatic growth characteristics of 60 infants who underwent corrective surgery for congenital heart disease.

Patients were assigned to the following groups: Group 1, cyanosis with pulmonary hypertension (PH); Group 2, cyanosis without PH; Group 3, large left-to-right shunt and PH; and Group 4, left-to-right shunt or obstructive heart lesion and no PH. Weight, length, and head circumference measurements and z scores were obtained before the operation, at 45 days, and 3, 6, and 12 months after the operation. Details about dietary intake, socioeconomic status at presentation, length of stay in the intensive care unit, hospitalization period, and perioperative events were noted. The endpoint was reaching a z score >-1 for all anthropometric measurements.

At presentation, 51 patients (85%) had malnutrition. The family income, dietary intake, and presence of preoperative chronic malnutrition were interrelated and influenced the weight of the patient at all times during the postoperative follow-up (p<0.05 for all values). The severity of the heart defect had no significant influence on the postoperative anthropometric measurements (p>0.05). The lowest preoperative z scores for weight and height were observed in Group 3. Seven patients could not achieve the endpoint at the end of 12 months (4 in Group 3 and 3 in Group 2).

Catch-up growth is attained mostly in the first year after corrective surgery. Delays in reaching z scores >-1 are observed in the chronically malnourished children. If adequate calories are provided and early corrective surgery is performed, the normal growth potential may be fulfilled Keywords : malnutrition, postoperative, catch-up growth, cardiac surgery.

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