Nutrition in Paediatric Crohn’s disease

  • Olivier Goulet University of Paris-Descartes
Keywords: Paediatric Crohn's Disease, Growth failure, target size, puberty, enteral feeding, immunosuppressive therapy, anti-TNF


Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) such as Crohn’s disease (CD) results from the interaction between an individual's immune response and precipitant environmental factors, which generate an anomalous chronic inflammatory response in those who are genetically predisposed. Protein-energy malnutrition (PEM) is a frequent consequence of CD. Macrophage products such as Tumour Necrosis Factor-α (TNF-α) and interleukins 1 and 6 may be the central molecules that link the inflammatory process to derangements of homeostasis. CD is associated with frequent nutritional deficiencies, the pattern and severity of which depends on the extent, duration and activity of the inflammation. Nutritional support is especially important in childhood CD as an alternative to pharmacological treatment, especially steroids. Current treatment regimens limit the use of corticosteroids, by using immunomodulatory drugs, recomm end the use of enteral nutrition, and, if necessary, and consider surgery for intestinal complications of localized CD. Biologic agents with the potential for mucosal healing hold promise of growth enhancement even among children whose growth remained compromised with previously available therapies. For all treatment modalities, there is a window of opportunity to achieve normal growth before puberty is too advanced.

Author Biography

Olivier Goulet, University of Paris-Descartes
Olivier Goulet MD, PhD Department of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition National Reference Center for Rare Digestive Diseases Intestinal Failure Rehabilitation Center Hôpital Necker - Enfants Malades, Paris, France University of Paris-Descartes Email :
How to Cite
Goulet, O. (1). Nutrition in Paediatric Crohn’s disease. South African Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 23(2), S33-S36. Retrieved from
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