The Effect of Short Stature on Children’s Cognitive Abilities and Psychosocial Condition

Heni Hastuti, Zahra Dzakiyatin Nisa, Husnia Auliyatul Umma, Anak Agung Alit Kirti Estuti Narendra Putri, Yusuf Ari Mashuri


Background: Children are categorized as short stature when the Height for Age results are below the 3rd percentile of CDC growth chart standard. Short stature on children will have an impact on increased mortality and morbidity, children’s cognitive development, and psychological abilities. This study aims to investigate the effect of short stature on cognitive abilities and psychosocial condition of primary school children.

Subjects and Methods: This was an observational analytic research with a cross-sectional design. A total of 81 students from 3rd – 5th grades of Pasar Kliwon 01 Primary School was included in this study. A consecutive sampling technique was used to select the subject. The student’s height was measured by using microtoise. Children’s cognitive ability was assessed based on mathematics, Indonesian languages, and natural sciences score. Children’s psychosocial condition was assessed using Pediatric Symptom Checklist-17. Data were analyzed using the Chi-Square test and logistic regression with SPSS 16.0 for windows.

Results: 50 of 81 students were classified as normal height and 31 students with short stature. Short stature children had lower cognitive abilities (p=0,047) and psychosocial condition (p=0,027) than normal height children. Sex (p=0,058), age (p=0,233), and socio-economic condition (p=0,767) were not associated with children’s cognitive abilities. Age (p=0,264), sex (p=0,913), and socio-economic condition (p=0,138) were also not associated with children’s psychosocial condition.

Conclusion: There is a statistically significant effect of short stature on children’s cognitive abilities and psychosocial condition in primary school. Age, sex, and socio-economic condition are not associated with children’s cognitive abilities and psychosocial condition. Screening and comprehensive management of short stature are needed to minimize the negative effect.

Keywords: short stature; cognitive ability; psychosocial condition.

Correspondence: Heni Hastuti. Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Sebelas Maret. Jl Ir. Sutami 36A, Surakarta Central Java, Indonesia. Email: Mobile: 081904534310.

Journal of Maternal and Child Health (2020), 05(03): 297-303

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