+1 Recommend
0 collections
      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: found
      Is Open Access

      Environmental Exposure to Metals and Children's Growth to Age 5 Years: A Prospective Cohort Study

      Read this article at

          There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.


          In this prospective cohort study, based on 1,505 mother-infant pairs in rural Bangladesh, we evaluated the associations between early-life exposure to arsenic, cadmium, and lead, assessed via concentrations in maternal and child urine, and children's weights and heights up to age 5 years, during the period 2001–2009. Concurrent and prenatal exposures were evaluated using linear regression analysis, while longitudinal exposure was assessed using mixed-effects linear regression. An inverse association was found between children's weight and height, age-adjusted z scores, and growth velocity at age 5 years and concurrent exposure to cadmium and arsenic. In the longitudinal analysis, multivariable-adjusted attributable differences in children's weight at age 5 years were −0.33 kg (95% confidence interval (CI): −0.60, −0.06) for high (≥95th percentile) arsenic exposure and −0.57 kg (95% CI: −0.88, −0.26) for high cadmium exposure, in comparison with children with the lowest exposure (≤5th percentile). Multivariable-adjusted attributable differences in height were −0.50 cm (95% CI: −1.20, 0.21) for high arsenic exposure and −1.6 cm (95% CI: −2.4, −0.77) for high cadmium exposure. The associations were apparent primarily among girls. The negative effects on children's growth at age 5 years attributable to arsenic and cadmium were of similar magnitude to the difference between girls and boys in terms of weight (−0.67 kg, 95% CI: −0.82, −0.53) and height (−1.3 cm, 95% CI: −1.7, −0.89).

          Related collections

          Most cited references 63

          • Record: found
          • Abstract: found
          • Article: not found

          Development of a WHO growth reference for school-aged children and adolescents.

          To construct growth curves for school-aged children and adolescents that accord with the WHO Child Growth Standards for preschool children and the body mass index (BMI) cut-offs for adults. Data from the 1977 National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)/WHO growth reference (1-24 years) were merged with data from the under-fives growth standards' cross-sectional sample (18-71 months) to smooth the transition between the two samples. State-of-the-art statistical methods used to construct the WHO Child Growth Standards (0-5 years), i.e. the Box-Cox power exponential (BCPE) method with appropriate diagnostic tools for the selection of best models, were applied to this combined sample. The merged data sets resulted in a smooth transition at 5 years for height-for-age, weight-for-age and BMI-for-age. For BMI-for-age across all centiles the magnitude of the difference between the two curves at age 5 years is mostly 0.0 kg/m(2) to 0.1 kg/m(2). At 19 years, the new BMI values at +1 standard deviation (SD) are 25.4 kg/m(2) for boys and 25.0 kg/m(2) for girls. These values are equivalent to the overweight cut-off for adults (> or = 25.0 kg/m(2)). Similarly, the +2 SD value (29.7 kg/m(2) for both sexes) compares closely with the cut-off for obesity (> or = 30.0 kg/m(2)). The new curves are closely aligned with the WHO Child Growth Standards at 5 years, and the recommended adult cut-offs for overweight and obesity at 19 years. They fill the gap in growth curves and provide an appropriate reference for the 5 to 19 years age group.
            • Record: found
            • Abstract: found
            • Article: not found

            Child development: risk factors for adverse outcomes in developing countries.

            Poverty and associated health, nutrition, and social factors prevent at least 200 million children in developing countries from attaining their developmental potential. We review the evidence linking compromised development with modifiable biological and psychosocial risks encountered by children from birth to 5 years of age. We identify four key risk factors where the need for intervention is urgent: stunting, inadequate cognitive stimulation, iodine deficiency, and iron deficiency anaemia. The evidence is also sufficient to warrant interventions for malaria, intrauterine growth restriction, maternal depression, exposure to violence, and exposure to heavy metals. We discuss the research needed to clarify the effect of other potential risk factors on child development. The prevalence of the risk factors and their effect on development and human potential are substantial. Furthermore, risks often occur together or cumulatively, with concomitant increased adverse effects on the development of the world's poorest children.
              • Record: found
              • Abstract: found
              • Article: not found

              Inequality in early childhood: risk and protective factors for early child development.

              Inequality between and within populations has origins in adverse early experiences. Developmental neuroscience shows how early biological and psychosocial experiences affect brain development. We previously identified inadequate cognitive stimulation, stunting, iodine deficiency, and iron-deficiency anaemia as key risks that prevent millions of young children from attaining their developmental potential. Recent research emphasises the importance of these risks, strengthens the evidence for other risk factors including intrauterine growth restriction, malaria, lead exposure, HIV infection, maternal depression, institutionalisation, and exposure to societal violence, and identifies protective factors such as breastfeeding and maternal education. Evidence on risks resulting from prenatal maternal nutrition, maternal stress, and families affected with HIV is emerging. Interventions are urgently needed to reduce children's risk exposure and to promote development in affected children. Our goal is to provide information to help the setting of priorities for early child development programmes and policies to benefit the world's poorest children and reduce persistent inequalities. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

                Author and article information

                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence to Dr. Marie Vahter, Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Box 210, 171 77 Stockholm, Sweden (e-mail: marie.vahter@ ).

                Abbreviations: CI, confidence interval; DMA, dimethylarsinic acid; MINIMat, Maternal and Infant Nutrition Interventions in Matlab; MMA, monomethylarsonic acid; SES, socioeconomic status.

                Am J Epidemiol
                Am. J. Epidemiol
                American Journal of Epidemiology
                Oxford University Press
                15 June 2013
                14 May 2013
                14 May 2013
                : 177
                : 12
                : 1356-1367
                © The Author 2012. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (, which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Original Contributions
                Editor's choice


                Comment on this article