Prospective study of antecedents for nonorganic failure to thrive

William A. Altemeier, Susan M. O'Connor, Kathryn B. Sherrod, Peter Vietze

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Abstract

The cause of nonorganic failure to thrive (NFT) was studied prospectively in 274 low-income pregnant mothers by interviewing them for characteristics that retrospective studies indicated were associated with child maltreatment. After delivery, medical charts of mothers and infants were reviewed for complications of pregnancy, delivery, and postdelivery hospitalization, and the infants were observed for growth failure. The characteristics of 15 families with infants who developed NFT were compared with those of 86 selected randomly from the remaining families. Interview results suggest that NFT correlates significantly with aberrant nurture during the mother's childhood and with conflicts between the parents of the infants. Perinatal events correlating significantly with NFT include complications of pregnancy, short gestation, and residual minor medical problems at discharge from the nursery. We speculate that these events predispose to NFT by disturbing the development of the mother-infant relationship.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)360-365
Number of pages6
JournalThe Journal of Pediatrics
Volume106
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1985

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Failure to Thrive
Prospective Studies
Mothers
Pregnancy Complications
Nurseries
Child Abuse
Child Development
Hospitalization
Retrospective Studies
Parents
Interviews
Pregnancy
Growth

Cite this

Altemeier, William A. ; O'Connor, Susan M. ; Sherrod, Kathryn B. ; Vietze, Peter. / Prospective study of antecedents for nonorganic failure to thrive. In: The Journal of Pediatrics. 1985 ; Vol. 106, No. 3. pp. 360-365.
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Prospective study of antecedents for nonorganic failure to thrive. / Altemeier, William A.; O'Connor, Susan M.; Sherrod, Kathryn B.; Vietze, Peter.

In: The Journal of Pediatrics, Vol. 106, No. 3, 01.01.1985, p. 360-365.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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