Children with chronic kidney disease (CKD) who had a low birth weight (LBW) or were small for gestational age (SGA) are at increased risk for poor growth outcomes, according to an online report in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Larry A. Greenbaum, MD, PhD, of Emory University in Atlanta, and colleagues analyzed data from 426 children with CKD, of whom 17% had LBW (below 2,500 grams). The researchers concluded LBW and SGA (birth weight below the 10th percentile for gestational age) are novel risk factors for lower weight and short stature in subjects with mild to moderate CKD, independent of kidney function.

Study findings suggest that “LBW and SGA should be added to the list of risk factors for short stature in children with CKD,” the authors wrote. The effect of SGA on stature in children with CKD was surprising, they added, because most children who are SGA have rapid catch-up growth and achieve a normal height by age two years.

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Among the covariates examined, male gender, older age, and having taller parents were significantly associated with increased height, the investigators reported. Race and CKD duration were not significantly associated with height.