Health Discoveries in Health Research News

Infant sleep patterns related to growth spurts

May 5, 2011
Growth spurts in infants may be related to periods of increased sleep time, according to pediatrics research published in the May issue of the journal Sleep.

"The results demonstrate empirically that growth spurts not only occur during sleep but are significantly influenced by sleep," said Dr. Michelle Lampl, a professor in the department of anthropology of Emory University in Atlanta. "Longer sleep corresponds with greater growth in body length."

The researchers relied on daily sleep records kept by 23 families for their infants, who were 12 days old when the study began. After examining about 5,800 sleep records, the research team found a correlation between intermittent surges in sleep that led to more growth.

Their conclusion was that a growth spurt in body length was 43 percent more likely to occur within 48 hours of a "sleep burst," or lengthened sleep period.

U.S. News & World Report has ranked Cohen Children's Medical Center, a member of the North Shore-LIJ Health System, among the nation's top 30 children's hospitals in the areas of diabetes and endocrinology, digestive disorders, respiratory disorders and urology.
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