Table 1

 Details of studies with a comparison group

First authorPopulationDefinition of FTTDuration of follow upAdequacy of follow upControlsBlinding at assessmentPotential confounders reported in the study
Population based studies
Mitchell, 19801219 of 30 children with history of FTT prior to 24 months of age in a primary care clinic of 312 identified by review of notes<80% normal wt, or FTT cited on the problem listAt 3–6 years12 of 19 cases 16 of 19 controlsControls matched at inception for age, maternal age, marital status, and family problemsBlinded for McCarthy Scale and behavioural questionnaire but not growthLife events score, sex, mother’s education, FTT
Corbett, 19961352 children identified as FTT by child health surveillance from 306 eligible children registered in 2 clinicsA fall of 2 centile lines for weight, sustained for >1 month5 years later48 of 52 (89%) cases and 46 of 52 (88%) controlsNext child on clinic register of same age and sexPsychologists blind to child’s statusNo control for confounders
Drewett, 199914136 children with FTT identified from a birth cohort of 3418Thrive index <5% on 2 or more occasions between ages 3–18 mthAt 7–9 yearsIQ testing: 79% cases, 87% controls
>Growth measures: 82% cases, 91% controls
Selected from cohort for normal growth and matched for age and residential areaPsychologists blind to child’s statusMaternal IQ, parental height, organic disease, maternal smoking, breast feeding, family size, birth order
Kerr, 20001592 children with FTT, of 193 children enrolled in a longitudinal study of child development and maltreatmentWeight <5th centile Age <25 mth
>Normal birth wt
At 6 y of ageNot clear101 children with wt >10% matched for age, race, sex, and SESNo detail givenMaltreatment as defined by a Child Protective Services Report for neglect, sexual or physical abuse, SES, age, gender
Boddy, 20001647 children identified as FTT by the age of 12 months from a cohort of 2004 births in 1986 and still resident in the areaWeight at 12 mth at or <3rd centile and sustained for at least 3 mthAt 6 yearsIQ testing: 42 of 47 cases, 42 of 47 controls
>Growth measures: 38 cases, 39 controls
Matched at inception for birth wt, sex, ethnicity, and residential areaBlinded for growth, unclear if blinded for IQ testingMaternal height, maternal IQ, changes in social index
Clinical sample based studies
Singer, 19841713 babies hospitalised at age 5–9 months for FTTWeight <3%At 3 yearsAll 13 cases, 9 of 13 organic FTT and 5 of 13 controlsSelected at inception from children attending the emergency room, but no details given. At F/U the remaining controls had higher BW, gestational age and parental educationNo details givenParental education
Drotar, 19921868 hospitalised infants aged 1–9 months, randomly assigned to 3 types of interventionNormal birth weight decreasing to weight <5th centile Weight gain demonstrated in hospitalAge 42–48 mth48 of 6847 controls matched at inception for age, sex, ethnicity, social factors, mother’s educationNo comment on blinding of assessorsEffect of treatment group
Reif, 19951986 children diagnosed with FTT at <2 years of age either as in or outpatientsAge <2 y, weight, height <5th centile for at least 6 mth, term infants5 years later61 of 86 children65 controls matched at assessment for age, sex, social setting, ethnicity (but birth wt and maternal ht were higher)No comment on blinding of assessorsBirth weight, severity of growth delay, parental heights, parental education