Pediatric TB found to affect lung function, growth post-recovery

20 Apr 2023 • Published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, a study has shown that children five years old or younger who developed PTB were more likely to subsequently wheeze, have poor lung function, and have reduced height and weight for their age, even after accounting for preexisting respiratory and growth conditions.

For the study, followed a cohort of 1,068 children from birth up to nine years old in two communities outside of Cape Town, from March 2012 to March 2015. They found that -

  • Children in the study who developed TB before one year of age had a lower weight and BMI for their age by the time they turned 5 years old
  • Those who developed PTB between one and four years of age had a lower length for their age
  • The researchers also found that children who developed PTB were at a greater risk of post-TB wheezing, regardless of when they developed the infection.
  • Children who developed PTB before they were six months old, were found to have more than double the risk of wheezing after 6 months, compared to children who did not develop PTB.
  • The risk of subsequent wheezing also increased when children developed PTB before they were 12 months, 24 months, or 36 months old.

These latest findings underscore the importance of prevention of TB in young children to avoid potential long-terM complications as they grow older. The study is the first to show post-TB pediatric growth impairment and an association between PTB and wheezing or recurrent wheezing after the infection.

Source: Boston University | Read full story

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