Estimation of lean body mass in children

Peters, A M, Snelling, H L R, Glass, D M and Bird, N J (2011) Estimation of lean body mass in children. BJA: British Journal of Anaesthesia, 106 (5). pp. 719-723. ISSN 0007-0912

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In adults, dosages of some anaesthetic agents are based on lean body mass (LBM) rather than body weight. Our aim was to derive an equation for estimating LBM in children.


Patients comprised three groups: prospective kidney transplant donors from two separate centres (centres 1 and 3) and children referred to a further centre (centre 2) for the routine clinical measurement of glomerular filtration rate (GFR). GFR and extracellular fluid volume (ECV) were measured using Cr-51-EDTA. LBM was directly estimated (eLBM) in adults using an equation based on height and weight. ECV in children was estimated (eECV) from another equation based on height and weight, converted to eLBM using the relationship between eLBM and ECV determined in the adults from centre 1 and then compared with adult data from centre 3.


In children, the ratio of eECV to ECV was 1.04 (SD 0.18). In centre 1, eLBM (kg) was 3.81 (SD 0.55) times greater than ECV (litres) in men (n=50) and 3.77 (0.77) times greater in women (n=51). eLBM in children was therefore derived by multiplying eECV by 3.8. In children, eLBM showed a close linear correlation with measured ECV (eLBM=3.50ECV+2.0; R(2)=0.857), similar to adults (eLBM=2.82ECV+14.5; R(2)=0.582). In all groups, eLBM/weight correlated inversely with weight.


In terms of the relationships between eLBM, ECV, and weight, children are similar to adults. Therefore, drug dosage in children should also be based on eLBM rather than weight

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Clinical and Experimental Medicine
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0071 Examination. Diagnosis Including radiography
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Depositing User: Ellen Thomas
Date Deposited: 12 Nov 2012 09:36
Last Modified: 12 Nov 2012 09:36
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