Body surface area calculator

Mosteller and Dubois methods

Commentary

Body surface area (BSA) is widely used to dose chemotherapies. A number of formulas can be used to estimate BSA. All can be inaccurate in infants and at extremes of body weight. A discussion of BSA can be found at this external link.

The Mosteller formula was published in 1987,1 and is a relatively simple and accurate formula that can be readily applied using a pocket calculator: BSA in m2 is the square root of (height in meters) x (weight in kg), divided by 6. It is a simplified modification of a formula derived from a study measuring BSA in 401 people.3

The Dubois and Dubois formula2 was published in 1916, and was based on just nine direct measurements of BSA. Despite this, it provides a reasonable estimate of BSA for most individuals,4 and remains in widespread use today.