Iberoamerican Journal of Medicine
Iberoamerican Journal of Medicine
Original article

Temporal trends in growth of boys adopted from Russia

Tendencias temporales del crecimiento de niños adoptados de Rusia

Gonzalo Oliván-Gonzalvo

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Introduction: The objective of this study is to contribute data on the temporal trends in weight, height, body mass index (BMI) and head circumference (HC) in boys adopted from Russia.
Material and methods: Prospective observational study on an initial cohort of 139 Russian boys adopted in Spain between 2001 and 2013. Adverse history was collected by reviewing pre-adoption medical records. Anthropometric parameters were measured and recorded in a standardized way. The measurements obtained were compared with the World Health Organization child growth standards, calculating the corresponding z-scores (Z) and percentiles for age and sex.
Results: Main history: preterm (32.4%), low birth weight (26.6%), prenatal alcohol exposure (19.4%), abandonment at birth (56.1%), abuse/neglect (49.3%). Initial post-arrival evaluation, 3 (1.7) years: weight Z, -1.24; height Z, -2.34; HC Z, -1.27. Significant catch-up growth (Z increase) in the first year: weight, +0.73; height, +1.05; HC, +0.6; in the second year: height, +0.58. Longitudinal growth pattern. Weight: from age 5 years, no relevant differences were observed. Height: at age 6 years a relevant delay persisted, from ages 7 to 11 years a gradual increase was observed, and from ages 12 to 17 years a gradual decrease, no showing relevant differences. BMI: showed that the degree of height delay was always higher than that of weight, balancing after age 14 years. HC: at age 5 years, there was no longer a relevant difference.
Conclusions: These findings suggest that, despite the important delay of weight, HC, and especially height at the time of adoption, and the various adverse factors for growth that they presented, international adoption led to a substantial recovery of all anthropometric parameters, showing plasticity in the physical growth of these children.


Child; Male; Russia; Adoption; Growth


Introducción: El objetivo de este estudio es aportar datos sobre las tendencias temporales en peso, talla, índice de masa corporal (IMC) y perímetro cefálico (HC) en niños varones adoptados de Rusia.
Material y métodos: Estudio observacional prospectivo sobre una cohorte inicial de 139 niños rusos adoptados en España entre los años 2001-2013. Se recopilaron antecedentes adversos revisando los informes médicos preadoptivos. Los parámetros antropométricos se midieron y registraron estandarizadamente. Las mediciones obtenidas se compararon con los estándares de crecimiento infantil de la Organización Mundial de la Salud, calculando las correspondientes puntuaciones Z (Z) y los percentiles para edad y sexo.
Resultados: Antecedentes principales: pretérmino (32,4%), bajo peso al nacer (26,6%), exposición prenatal al alcohol (19,4%), abandono al nacimiento (56,1%), abuso/negligencia (49,3%). Evaluación inicial post-llegada, 3 (1,7) años: Z peso, -1,24; Z talla, -2,34; Z PC, -1,27. Crecimiento recuperador significativo (incremento Z) en el primer año: peso, +0.73; talla, +1.05; PC, +0.6; en el segundo año: talla, +0.58. Patrón de crecimiento longitudinal. Peso: desde los 5 años de edad no se observaron diferencias relevantes. Talla: a los 6 años de edad persistía retraso relevante, desde los 7 hasta los 11 años se observó aumento paulatino, y desde los 12 hasta los 17 años una disminución gradual, sin mostrar diferencias relevantes. IMC: mostró que el grado de retraso de la talla fue superior al del peso, equilibrándose a partir de los 14 años de edad. PC: a los 5 años de edad no se observó diferencia relevante.
Conclusiones: Estos hallazgos sugieren que, a pesar del importante retraso del peso, PC y especialmente de la talla en el momento de la adopción, y de los diversos factores adversos para el crecimiento que presentaban, la adopción internacional condujo a una recuperación sustancial de todos los parámetros antropométricos, manifestando una plasticidad en el crecimiento físico de estos niños.

Palabras clave

Niño; Varón; Rusia; Adopción; Crecimiento


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