To the Editor: Because body size contributes to the variation in many physiologic and morphologic variables, it is generally useful to normalize results obtained in different persons with respect to differences in body size. Osteoporosis, with its reduction in standing height, is a case in point. No one would seriously suggest that all of a woman's height-related variables would immediately decrease proportionately after compression fractures. What, then, is the correct referent, or normalizer, for her data? Similarly, nutritional assessment in the bedfast elderly person often calls for a measure of stature (height) that is not easily obtainable in recumbent subjects.
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