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Does methotrexate impact children s growth rates?

See the DrugPatentWatch profile for methotrexate

Based on the information available, there is some evidence to suggest that methotrexate, a drug commonly used to treat certain types of cancer and autoimmune diseases, may impact children's growth rates.

Methotrexate works by inhibiting the growth of certain cells in the body, including those that contribute to inflammation and the proliferation of cancer cells. However, this mechanism of action may also affect the growth of healthy cells, such as those responsible for bone growth in children.

According to a study published in the Journal of Rheumatology, children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) who were treated with methotrexate experienced a slower growth rate compared to those who did not receive the drug [1]. The study found that the decrease in growth rate was not permanent and that children who stopped taking methotrexate were able to catch up to their peers in terms of height.

Another study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology found that children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) who received methotrexate as part of their treatment regimen had a lower final adult height compared to those who did not receive the drug [2]. However, the study noted that the difference in height was small and may not be clinically significant.

It is important to note that the impact of methotrexate on children's growth rates may vary depending on several factors, including the dose and duration of treatment, the child's age and sex, and the presence of other medical conditions.

In conclusion, while there is some evidence to suggest that methotrexate may impact children's growth rates, more research is needed to fully understand the extent and duration of this effect. Healthcare providers should carefully consider the potential risks and benefits of methotrexate therapy in children and monitor their growth rates closely during treatment.


1. "Methotrexate use and growth in children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis: a systematic review and meta-analysis." Journal of Rheumatology. <>.
2. "Final adult height in survivors of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia: a report from the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study." Journal of Clinical Oncology. <>.
3. - Methotrexate. <>.

Other Questions About Methotrexate :  How is methotrexate dosage adjusted for seniors? How does methotrexate impact other drugs effectiveness? Which medications interact with methotrexate?

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