Document Type



Growth in height and weight of 397 asthmatic hoys aged 3.5 to 20 years was studied at 3 monthly intervals in a mixed longitudinal survey. Absolute measures as well as mean yearly increments have been compared to adequate standards. Growth in height was little retarded during childhood but the difference between normal and asthmatic boys increased regularly until the age of 14 years. Afterwards this difference decreased again and mean height reached normal values at the age of 19 years. The mean yearly increments for height were on a few exceptions below the normal mean increments during childhood. The maximum mean increment occurred at about the age of 14.75 years (this is 0.75 years later than normal) and was somewhat less intensive than normally seen. Beyond the age of 15 years, the mean increment for height was consistently higher than normal. The mean values for weight corresponded fairly well to the reference curve during childhood. During pubertal ages, these means became gradually located below normal. Afterwards, they came once again closer to the mean reference values up to the age of 16.25 year. Beyond that age mean weight showed a rather irregular pattern but remained definitely below normal. The mean yearly increments for weight were nearly normal during childhood. The adolescent spurt for weight was somewhat delayed but rather sharp and intensive. The pattern of growth in asthmatic boys seems to be determined by a retardation in physiological maturation affecting growth in height especially at the time of normal puberty, but without noticeable influence on adult stature. Retardation of growth in weight begins at the time of normal puberty and persists during childhood.