Height assessment

Lesson 2 : Assessment of Nutritional Status- Nutritional anthropometry

Height assessment

Height: the height of an individual is made up of the sum of four components legs, pelvis, spine and skull.
In subjects > 2 years “height” is measured
< 2 years “recumbent length” (crown-heel length) is measured


  1. Gives a picture of past nutritional status.
  2. Deficit in height indicates chronic and prolonged under nutrition.

Equipment and Technique:
In young children

In children below the age of two years, who cannot stand properly, recumbent length (crown-heel length) should be measured using an infantometer. The legs need to be held straight and firm with the feet touching the sliding board.
In older children and adults

A vertical measuring rod or a scale fixed to a wall can be used.
Steps in taking measurements

  1. Remove the shoes
  2. Should stand on a flat floor with feet parallel and with heels, buttocks, shoulders and back of head touching the upright.
  3. The head should be comfortably erect.
  4. The head piece which can be a metal bar or a wooden block is gently lowered, crushing the hair and making contact with the top of the hand.
  5. The measuring scale should be capable of measuring to an accuracy of 0.5cm.

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Last modified: Tuesday, 29 November 2011, 9:35 AM