Attained adult height after childhood asthma: Effect of glucocorticoid therapy

Marc D. Silverstein*, John W. Yunginger, Charles E. Reed, Tanya Petterson, Donald Zimmerman, James T C Li, W. Michael O'Fallon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

160 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Although oral and inhaled glucocorticoid therapy may impair growth in children with asthma, the effect of glucocorticoid therapy and asthma on attained adult height has not been extensively studied in representative children in the community. Objectives: The study was designed to compare the attained adult height of children with asthma with the attained adult height of nonasthmatic children and to compare the attained adult height of asthmatic children treated with glucocorticoids with the attained adult height of asthmatic children who did not receive glucocorticoids. Methods: Residents of Rochester, Minnesota, with onset of asthma from 1964 to 1987 and age- and sex-matched nonasthmatic residents of Rochester were studied. Glucocorticoid exposure was assessed from medical records. The mean of 5 studiometer measurements of adult height, adjusted for sex and parental height, was analyzed. Results: One hundred fifty-three patients with asthma (mean age at onset, 6.1 ± 4.8 years) and 153 age- and sex-matched nonasthmatic subjects were studied. Adult height of patients with asthma (mean age at measurement, 25.7 ± 5.2 years) was not significantly different from the adult height of nonasthmatic subjects; the overall difference, adjusted for mid-parental height, was -0.20 cm (95% confidence interval from -0.27 to 1.64). The adult height of asthmatic children treated with glucocorticoids was not significantly different from the adult height of patients with asthma not treated with glucocorticoids; the difference after adjusting for mid-parental height was -0.2 cm (95% confidence interval from - 0.1 to 0.6). Conclusions: We conclude that the attained adult height of patients with asthma is not different from the adult height of age- and sex- matched nonasthmatic subjects and that the attained adult height of asthmatic children treated with glucocorticoids is not significantly different from the adult height of children not treated with glucocorticoids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)466-474
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Volume99
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 1997

Keywords

  • Asthma
  • glucocorticoids
  • growth
  • height

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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