The health of children adopted from Romania

Study Title: The health of children adopted from Romania

Authors: Johnson DE, Miller LC, Iverson S, Thomas W, Franchino B, Dole K, Kiernan MB, Georgieff MK, Hostetter MK

Abstract: This comes from our initial article on Romanian adoptees which clearly showed that children lost one month of linear growth for each month they were institutionalized based on growth lag (chronological age minus height age). Sixty-five Romanian adoptees who were brought to the United States during a 12-month period beginning in October 1990; only 15% were judged to be physically healthy and developmentally normal. Infants’ length, weight, head circumference, and weight-for-height were adversely affected by institutionalization. Older children’s height was reduced. Only 10% of children older than 12 months were developmentally normal. The orphanage environment had a clear and adverse effect on growth during infancy.

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