The Most Complete Anthropometric Calculator from Boston Children’s Hospital 

At nearly every pediatrics visit, I make sure to review the child’s growth charts with the parents/caregivers. Most of the time, my nursing staff and the EMR make this relatively routine. But what about a preterm infant? Should I use the WHO or CDC charts? Is their blood pressure normal? What if they have Down’s Syndrome or some other chromosome disorder? Those are times that I need an anthropometric calculator app! For some of the common newborn and general pediatrics issues, we recommend your turn to UpToDate, Dynamed, or Essential Evidence Plus. We also love to use Pedi QuikCalc, and Baby Weight Tools. All of these are reasonable and contain similar information. Pedi QuikCalc deserves a particular shout-out. The app by Kent Bonney, MD, is really a Swiss Army knife of an app since it performs drug dosing, resuscitation drug calculations, newborn weight loss calculations, and bilirubin monitoring and treatment information; the app is cheap, but still costs $4.99. 

But if you just want one app that is free — as in it costs nothing — then, as usual, Dr. Joshua Steinberg’s Baby Weight Tools is the one to beat as it not only does the “hard math” for newborn infant weight loss prior to discharge/follow-up, it also predicts weight gain for failure to thrive infants (FTT). However, neither of these apps cover ALL the possible weight (and BP) related issues we encounter in caring for children. Dr. Daniel Metzger, a pediatric endocrinologist, at Boston Children’s Hospital has created the outstanding AnthroCalc app which pulls together seemingly every anthropometric calculator out there into one app. The app covers the basic WHO and CDC growth charts but distinguishes itself by including preterm infant charts, BP charts, and charts for syndromes such as Down’s and Turner’s. 

Evidence-based medicine

AnthroCalc contains key preterm, term, and general pediatric as well as developmental pediatric anthropometric calculators. It is so far the most complete collection I have seen in a single app. It even includes BP calculators. The app comes from Dr Daniel Metzger at Boston Children’s Hospital. It includes references to the most current guidelines from WHO, NIH, CDC, AAP for its anthropometric calculations. Despite some of these guidelines relying on expert opinion, they remain the standard of care. 

 What providers would benefit from this App?

Students, residents, mid-levels, nurses, Family Medicine, Pediatricians, Neonatologists, Emergency Medicine. Any provider who treats newborns/infants, pediatric patients.

 Price

o Free

Likes

  • Easy to use, rapid calculations, excellent graphics/graphing capability
  • Numerous calculators for growth, blood pressure, syndromes, and preterm infants
  • Available for Android

Dislikes

  • Lacks hyperlinks for references
  • Can’t toggle between CDC/WHO with data saved easily
  • The interface is entirely black/white which can be challenging to view for some

Overall

I had been looking for a dedicated anthropometric calculator app since my previous favorite was discontinued some time ago. Although a number of other pediatric apps have basic growth charts and others have BP calculators/graphing, no app other than AnthroCalc has both plus the myriad of syndromic and preterm calculators. It is a wonderful Swiss Army knife app and one that is easy to use as well.  Every provider who cares for newborns and pediatric patients could benefit from this app. The app is also available for Android. 

Overall Score

o 4.5 stars

User Interface

o 4.5 stars

Intuitive, fast, sensible categories, drop-down menus. 

Multimedia Usage

o 4.5 stars

All calculators built into app, quality graphing function, references but no hyperlinks.

Price

o 5 stars

A great resource for free.

Real-World Applicability

o 5 stars

Daniel Metzger, MD’s, AnthroCalc app is the most complete anthropometric calculator app available. The app saves providers significant time making these calculations quick and easy with quality graphing capabilities. Furthermore, for those pediatricians and developmental pediatricians, AnthroCalc includes unique calculations not seen in most other peds apps such as blood pressure, syndromes such as Down’s, and preterm infant calculations. The app also includes the traditional ht, wt, HC for both CDC and WHO. Highly recommended. 

Device Used For Review

o iPhone 11 Pro running iOS 14.0.1

Available for Download for iPhone, iPad, and Android.

Disclaimer: The views expressed are those of the author(s) and do not reflect the official policy of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense or the U.S. Government.