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Growth and bone density in children with mild-moderate asthma: A cross-sectional study in children entering the Childhood Asthma Management Program (CAMP)

The Journal of Pediatrics
DOI: 10.1067/mpd.2003.86


Abstract Objectives We sought to determine whether mild-moderate persistent asthma sufficient to produce a decrease in baseline lung function is associated with an adverse effect on growth and bone mineral density (BMD) in children. Methods This was a cross-sectional study of 1041 children, 5 to 12 years old (32% ethnic/racial minorities and 40% female), enrolled into the Childhood Asthma Management Program (CAMP). Measures of asthma severity included: Spirometry; bronchial hyperresponsiveness; duration of asthma symptoms; and symptom-based assessment of severity. Multiple regression analyses were used to relate the asthma severity on the primary outcome variables: Height by stadiometry and BMD by dual energy radiographic absorptiometry. Results The mean ± SD height percentile was 56.0 ± 28.5 percentile for the population. The only significant relationship between asthma severity and height percentile was with methacholine bronchoprovocation in girls (β 2.98, P = .019, covariate multiple regression). The mean ± SD BMD was 0.65 ± 0.10 g/cm2 for the population. The past use of corticosteroids did not adversely affect either growth or BMD. Conclusions We found that mild-moderate asthma of as long as 4 to 7 years duration in children does not produce an adverse effect on linear growth or BMD. (J Pediatr 2003;142:286-91)

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