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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 87

of 'Chronic functional constipation and fecal incontinence in infants and children: Treatment'

Cutoff volume of dietary fiber to ameliorate constipation in children.
Chao HC, Lai MW, Kong MS, Chen SY, Chen CC, Chiu CH
J Pediatr. 2008;153(1):45. Epub 2008 Feb 11.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the proper ingested volume of dietary fiber for relieving constipation in children.
STUDY DESIGN: During a 3-year period, we prospectively evaluated the correlation of intake volume of dietary fiber with improvement of constipation in children. Patients were categorized into younger (3-7 years) and older (8-14 years) children. The evaluation period lasted 12 weeks. A good improvement was defined as the child exhibiting at least 60% relief of the constipation symptoms during the observation period. Freedom from constipation was observed during the last 4 weeks.
RESULTS: The study population consisted of 422 patients (213 younger, 209 older), with a mean age of 7.89 +/- 4.71 years. Baseline daily dietary fiber intake of the younger and older groups was 5.97 +/- 2.35 g and 9.83 +/- 3.51 g, respectively. 227 cases (53.8 %) showed improvement of constipation, and 49.1 % of the patients had relief of constipation. Greater intake of dietary fiber was positively associated with good improvement of constipation in both groups (P = .002, and P<.001). Cutoff volumes of daily dietary fiber intake in the relief of constipation were 10 g in the younger group and 14.5 g in the older group.
CONCLUSION: The cutoff of dietary fiber intake needed to relieve constipation increased with age, achievable in a 12-week intervention.
Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Pediatrics, Chang Gung Children's Hospital, Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Taoyuan, Taiwan.