Demographic and clinical parameters are comparable across different types of pediatric feeding disorder

Tut Galai, Gal Friedman, Michal Moses, Kim Shemer, Dana L. Gal, Anat Yerushalmy-Feler, Ronit Lubetzky, Shlomi Cohen, Hadar Moran-Lev*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Knowledge and understanding of risk mechanisms associated with pediatric feeding disorder (PFD) remain limited. We aimed to investigate factors associated with PFD and their relation to specific PFD types according to the recent consensus WHO-based definition. We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of children with PFD and retrieved their demographic and clinical characteristics. Healthy age- and sex-matched children served as controls. Included were 254 children with PFD [median (interquartile range) age 16.4 (9.5–33) months at diagnosis] and 108 children in the control group [median age 24.85 (14.5–28.5) months]. According to the WHO-based definition, disturbances in oral intake were predominantly related to nutritional dysfunction in 118 (46.6%), feeding skill dysfunction in 83 (32.3%), medical conditions in 42 (16.7%) and psychosocial dysfunction in 11 (4.4%). In multivariate analysis, children with PFD had a higher risk for lower socioeconomic background (P < 0.01) and low birth weight (26.8% compared to 7.4%, P < 0.001). Moreover, significantly fewer children in the PFD group were breastfed (75% versus 89%, P = 0.003). There were no significant differences in any of those variables between PFD types. In conclusion, low socioeconomic status, lack of breastfeeding, and low birth weight were significantly more frequent in children with PFD. PDF manifest as multiple dysfunctions, thus highlighting the need to offer these children and their families multidisciplinary care.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8596
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2022


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