Abstract Sir.—A study of growth with emphasis on head circumference in premature infants done while I was a resident adds support to the conclusions of Moyer-Mileur and Chan.1 I measured weights and head circumferences (occipitofrontal circumference [OFC]) at least twice during the first week and then weekly for the hospital course (a minimum of two weeks) of 44 newborns admitted to an intensive care nursery. Measurements were made without comparison to prior measurements. The groups of premature infants, arranged according to the pattern of head growth, are listed in the Table. Four infants received parenteral nutrition, with subsequent rapid weight gain and increase in OFC. The infants at risk for significant shrinkage in OFC were those below 2000 g and 36 weeks' gestational age with significant respiratory or other problems that prevented adequate enteral nourishment for a prolonged period. When nutrition was adequate, head growth occurred prior to weight References 1. Moyer-Mileur L, Chan GM: Nutritional support of very-low-birth-weight infants requiring prolonged assisted ventilation . AJDC 1986;140: 929-932. 2. Dobbing J: Undernutrition and the developing brain . AJDC 1970;120:411-415.
American Journal of Diseases of Children – American Medical Association
Published: May 1, 1987
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