Background A relationship exists between the birth weight (BW) and the glomerular filtration rate (GFR) in postnatal kidney. Willing to fill a gap of knowledge in sub-Saharan Africa, we assessed the effect of BW on blood pressure (BP), proteinuria and GFR among Cameroonians children.
Methods This was a cross-sectional hospital-based study from January to April 2018 at the Yaounde Gynaeco-Obstetric and Paediatric Hospital (YGOPH). We recruited low BW (LBW) [<2500g], normal BW (NBW) [2500-3999g] and high BW (HBW) [>4000g] children, aged 5-10 years, born and followed-up at YGOPH. We collected socio-demographic, clinical (weight, height, BP), laboratory (proteinuria, creatinine), maternal and birth data. The estimated GFR was calculated using Schwartz equation.
Results We included 80 children (61.2% boys) with 21 (26.2%) LBW, 45 (56.2%) NBW and 14 (15.5%) HBW; the median (interquartile range) age was 7.3 (6.3-8.1) years and 17 (21.2%) were overweight/obese. Two (2.5%) children, all with a NBW (4.4%), had an elevated BP whereas 2 (2.5%) others children, all with a LBW (9.5%), had hypertension (p=0.233). Seven (8.7%) children had proteinuria with 19%, 2.2% and 14.3% having LBW, NBW and HBW respectively (p=0.051). Equivalents figures were 18 (22.5%), 14.3%, 24.2% and 28.6% for decrease GFR (p=0.818). There was a trends towards an inverse relationship between BW and BP, proteinuria and GFR (p>0.05).
Conclusion Proteinuria is more pronounced in childhood with history of LBW and HBW while LBW children are more prone to develop hypertension. Regular follow-up is needed to implement early nephroprotective measures among children with abnormal BW.