Some children experience slow growth due to factors such as diet, emotional stress, or disease. For a small number of children and adults, their short stature is caused by a medical condition that either slows or stops growth. Norditropin® is used to treat some of these conditions.
What is childhood growth hormone deficiency?
Growth hormone deficiency (GHD) means that your child’s body does not make enough growth hormone, which is needed for growth during childhood. Not enough growth hormone can cause poor growth in children.
What causes GHD?
Reasons for growth hormone deficiency include:
Lack of glandular development. Children can be born with growth hormone deficiency because their pituitary gland or hypothalamus gland is not fully developed.
Glandular trauma or impediment. Some children develop growth hormone deficiency after birth as a result of head trauma, a serious brain infection, or even a brain tumor.
What are the signs of GHD?
Most children with GHD appear otherwise healthy. Often, short stature is the only feature present. If GHD is the cause of your child’s slow growth, there are medicines that may help.
Children with GHD are shorter than other children who are the same age. They may have a growth curve that is often below the 3rd percentile, or are showing abnormally slow growth for a long period of time.
Some signs of GHD are:
Much shorter height than expected, based on biological parents’ heights
Slowing of growth rate
Growth that is below the 3rd percentile
How is GHD diagnosed?
Your child’s doctor may check for other causes of poor growth, such as poor nutrition, emotional stress, or disease. After a physical exam and review of your child’s medical and family history, the doctor may look at his or her pattern of growth. They may order blood tests. If no signs of other conditions are present, the doctor may refer your child to a pediatric endocrinologist for further evaluation and testing.
For many parents, facing the possibility of growth hormone disorder leads to some worries, as well as many questions. By asking your questions and talking with your child’s doctor, you can decide the next steps together.
After the diagnosis.
After diagnosing your child with GHD, the doctor may recommend a treatment such as growth hormone, and will likely ask for regular follow-up visits to monitor your child’s growth and make sure that treatment is working well. Learn more about Norditropin®, a growth hormone treatment option.
Learn more about what life is like for families whose children are being treated with Norditropin®.