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In Reply.—We appreciate Dr Goldstein's comments regarding patterns of head growth and their association with nutritional support in preterm infants. Dr Goldstein observed that preterm infants who received adequate nutrition experienced head growth prior to Weight gain and attained birth OFC prior to regaining birth weight.
Our study of 134 infants with birth weights less than 1500 g who required prolonged assisted ventilation (six days or more) showed a correlation between nutritional support and Weight loss and time to regain birth weight. Over the three-year study period, we found decreases in weight loss (13% to 10%) and in mean time to regain birth weight (20.9±7.3 [SD] to 13.8±6.4 [SD]) in these very-low-birth-weight, critically ill infants. Concurrently, the use of parenteral feeding routes increased, as did tolerance of initial enteral feedings following parenteral support.
We attributed the decreased convalescence period for weight recovery to improved nutrition secondary to the increased use
Chan GM. Head Growth in Premature Infants-Reply. Am J Dis Child. 1987;141(5):475. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1987.04460050017006