Original communication: Basal metabolic rate in children with a solid tumor

E. den Broeder, B. Oeseburg, R.J.J. Lippens, W.A. van Staveren, R.C.A. Sengers, M.A. van 't Hof, J.J.M. Tolboom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To study the level of and changes in basal metabolic rate (BMR) in children with a solid tumour at diagnosis and during treatment in order to provide a more accurate estimate of energy requirements for nutritional support. Design: An observational study. Setting: Tertiary care at the Centre for Paediatric Oncology, University Hospital Nijmegen. Subjects: Thirteen patients were recruited from a population of patients visiting the University Hospital Nijmegen for treatment. All patients asked to participate took part in and completed the study. Intervention: BMR was measured by indirect calorimetry, under stringent, standardised conditions, for 20 min and on three different occasions in all patients. Continuous breath gas analysis using a mouthpiece was performed. Weight, height and skinfold measurements were performed before each measurement. Main outcome measures: BMR was expressed as percentage of the estimated reference value, according to the Schofield formulas based on age, weight and sex, and in kJ (kcal) per kg of fat-free mass. Results: At diagnosis, the BMR was higher than the estimated reference BMR in all patients and 44␘f the patients were considered hypermetabolic. Mean BMR (as percentage of reference) was significantly increased (11.6øs.d. 6.7› P=0.001), but decreased during treatment in 12 of the 13 patients (mean decrease 12.7øs.d. 3.9› P<0.0001). Furthermore, a significant negative correlation (P=-0.67; P=0.01) was found between the change in BMR and tumour response. Conclusions: These data suggest that the BMR of children with a solid tumour is increased at diagnosis and possibly during the first phase of oncologic treatment. This may be important when determining energy requirements for nutritional support
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)673-681
JournalEuropean Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Publication statusPublished - 2001


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