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Children’s Growth

Children’s Growth

Q: How tall will my child be when they are done growing as an adult?

A: If a child has healthy adequate nutrition, and if there are no hormonal problems, the child’s expected adult height is calculated as follows: Add the mother’s height and the father’s height in centimeters, and divide by 2. Then, if the child is a boy, add 6.5 centimeters, and if it is a girl, subtract 6.5 centimeters.

Q: How do I know whether or not my child is growing well?

A: Maintain follow up visits with your child’s pediatrician. The pediatrician will maintain documentation of your child’s growth over time and have it compared to averages for normal growth in children of similar age. Some families will measure their children’s height themselves and put marks on the wall in their rooms, or just make sure that their shoe size is growing.

Q: How do I get an accurate height measurement for my child at home?

A: Make sure your child is not wearing shoes. Make sure the child stands with their back to the wall. Make sure the posture is straight. Make sure all the parts of the body indicated with the red arrows in the picture above are touching the wall behind. Put a book on the child’s head and mark the height on the wall corresponding to the highest point. Measure from the floor to that height after moving the child away.

Q: What do I do if I am concerned about my child’s growth?

A: Discuss with the child’s pediatrician. Based on the growth over time, or based on your concern, some lab tests may be done to assess for Growth Hormone or Thyroid Hormone production. A decision may be made to refer you to see an Endocrinologist. Make sure your child has adequate nutritional intake.

Q: Will Growth Hormone injections help make my child taller?

A: There are specific proven medical conditions when Growth Hormone supplementation is beneficial. These include conditions when the child’s pituitary gland is not making Growth Hormone on its own. There are also some genetic conditions with which a child may benefit from Growth Hormone supplementation. Otherwise, Growth Hormone will not help the child’s final height and will only place the child at risk for dangerous side effects from the medication. Sometimes, slow growth is due to a child’s puberty being too slow, and the evaluation and treatment in this case would be different.

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