Measurement of growth in children with developmental disabilities.

date: 09/01/1996
author: Stevenson RD.
publication: Dev Med Child Neurol. 1996 Sep;38(9):855-60.
pubmed_ID: 8810718

The clinical assessment of growth is a challenging, but essential, aspect of managing the health care of children with developmental disabilities. However, with standard equipment, modest training and some patience, almost all children can be measured reliably. Once reliable measurements are obtained, the interpretation or ‘clinical meaning’ of the measurements depends on their comparison with reference data from normal populations or, when available, with condition-specific reference data. More research is needed to improve our understanding of the clinical meaning of obtained measurements. The range of normal growth for some children with disabilities, particularly CP, remains to be defined. Research in the next ten years will, hopefully, lead to the development of growth charts for children with CP, and perhaps children with other conditions, which will facilitate the clinical interpretation of growth data and lead to improved management of health care for children with developmental disabilities.