Short-term bowel adaptation has been documented, but data on long-term effects are scarce. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the long-term consequences of infantile short bowel syndrome (SBS). A cross-sectional assessment (2005–7) of growth, nutritional status, defecation pattern and health status in individuals with a history of infantile SBS, born between 1975 and 2002, were performed. Data were compared with reference values of healthy controls and presented as means and standard deviations or median and ranges. A total of forty subjects (sixteen male and twenty-four female; mean age 14·8 (sd 6·8) years) had received parenteral nutrition during a median of 110 (range 43–2345) d, following small bowel resection. The mean standard deviation scores (SDS) for weight for height and target height (TH) of the children were normal; mean SDS for height for age was − 0·9 (sd 1·3). The median BMI adults was 19·9 (range 17–26) kg/m2; mean SDS for height for age was − 1·0 (range − 2·5 to 1·5). Height in general was significantly shorter than TH, and 53 % of children and 78 % of adults were below TH range. Most subjects had normal body fat percentage (%BF). SDS for total body bone mineral density were generally normal. The SDS for bone mineral content (BMC) of the children were − 1·0 (sd 1·1). Mean energy intake was 91 % of the estimated average requirements. The frequencies of defecation and bowel complaints of the subjects were significantly higher than in healthy controls. In conclusion, infantile SBS results in shorter stature than was expected from their calculated TH. BMC was lower than reference values, but the subjects had normal weight for height and %BF.