BACKGROUND : Poor nutritional status has been shown to be associated with a significant decline in lung function in patients with
cystic fibrosis. There are few data published on the lung function decline and the effects of nutritional status in cystic fibrosis (CF)
in South Africa.
AIM : To assess anthropometric parameters (weight, height, body mass index Z-score) in relation to lung function parameters in
METHODOLOGY : A retrospective chart review of clinical records of participants over the age of five years attending the CF clinic at
Steve Biko Academic Hospital from 2005 to 2010.
RESULTS : Twenty files were reviewed for lung function, anthropometric measurements, gender and CF-causing mutations. For
anthropometric measurements the average changes were –0.8, –0.5 and 2.0 for weight, BMI and height Z-scores, respectively.
A decline in FEV1 of –25.3 (95% CI 39.4; –13.3) over the five-year period was noted, with an average decline of 5.3% per year. For
FEF25-75, the average change was –22.4 (95% CI-34.6; –10.2) with a decline of 4.5% per year. Using multivariate analysis, the FEV1
was found to be significantly influenced by: age –3.96 (95% CI –7.4; –0.5); p = 0.03, weight 1.8 (95% CI –3.4; –0.9); p = 0.04, BMI
Z-score 4.3 (95% CI 5.3; 23.3); p = 0.02 and gender (p = 0.02). The FEF25-75 was significantly influenced by BMI Z-score and gender.
CONCLUSION : The average lung function decline per year for FEV1 was higher than that seen in developed countries. The decline in
FEV1 was related to gender, age, weight and BMI. The decline in FEF25-75 was affected only by BMI Z-score and gender.