Weight, Length, and Body Mass Index Growth of Children Under 2 Years of Age With Cleft Lip and Palate

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To study the growth of length-for-age (L/A), weight-for-age (W/A), and body mass index (BMI) of children with cleft lip and palate receiving a normal diet; to establish specific growth curves for children with cleft palate with or without cleft lip (CLP/ICP) who had not undergone palatoplasty and for children with isolated cleft lip (ICL); and to assess if CLP/ICP growth differed from ICL growth and if CLP/ICP and ICL growth differed from growth for typical children.


Prospective and cross-sectional study.


Hospital for Rehabilitation of Craniofacial Anomalies, Bauru, São Paulo, Brazil.

Main Outcome Measures:

Weight and length of 381 children with cleft lip and palate and who were younger than 2 years were recorded and used to calculate W/A, L/A, and BMI growth curves. The 2006 World Health Organization growth charts were used as a reference for typical children. All children received a normal diet for age.


Children with CLP/ICP had median W/A and BMI growth curves below growth curves for typical children but showed spontaneous recovery starting at approximately 5 months of age, even with nonoperated cleft palate. Children with ICL had growth similar to that of typical children. Children with CLP/ICP, who initially had W/A and BMI values less than those of the ICL group, had W/A and BMI equal to or higher than the ICL group after 9 months of age.


Children with CLP/ICP had impaired W/A and BMI growth with spontaneous recovery starting early in childhood. This study established specific W/A, BMI, and L/A growth curves for children with cleft lip and palate.

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