Pediatric Growth Hormone Deficiency

If your child is much shorter in stature than their peers, pediatric growth hormone deficiency could be to blame. At Newport Children’s Medical Group, with five locations in Newport Beach, Irvine, Costa Mesa, and Laguna Beach, California, the board-certified pediatricians can screen for, diagnose, and treat pediatric growth hormone deficiency to speed up your child’s growth. Schedule an appointment with Newport Children’s Medical Group over the phone today.

Pediatric Growth Hormone Deficiency Q & A

What is pediatric growth hormone deficiency?

Pediatric growth hormone deficiency is a condition in which your child fails to grow at a normal rate for their age and gender. It results because your child’s body doesn’t produce enough growth hormone. Treatment can correct the problem.

What are the symptoms of pediatric growth hormone deficiency?

The main signs and symptoms of pediatric growth hormone deficiency in children are:

  • Short stature for their age and gender
  • Being below the 3rd percentile line on growth charts
  • Being normal weight for their height
  • A prominent forehead
  • An immature appearance
  • A chubby build
  • An underdeveloped nose bridge

Possible complications of the disorder if it’s left untreated are low energy levels, decreases in bone mineral density, a shorter adult height, and a higher risk of heart problems.

What causes growth hormone deficiency?

Pediatric growth hormone deficiency has numerous causes. Many children are born with the condition, but it can also develop later.

It might occur with structural or genetic abnormalities of the pituitary gland, which is the gland located at the base of the brain that produces growth hormone.

While less common, growth hormone deficiency can also result from autoimmune conditions,  infections, head trauma, radiation, or tumors.

How is pediatric growth hormone deficiency diagnosed?

To diagnose pediatric growth hormone deficiency, your Newport Children’s Medical Group provider evaluates your child’s growth patterns. They might also complete blood tests, X-rays, MRIs, or other imaging procedures.

During a growth hormone stimulation test, your provider draws your child’s blood after they take medication to increase growth hormone, and measures how much growth hormone their body can produce.

How is growth hormone deficiency treated?

The treatment for pediatric growth hormone deficiency is administering synthetic human growth hormone with daily injections.

Newport Children’s Medical Group specialists determine the dosage of hormone that’s appropriate for your child based on how much they weigh and how their body reacts to the treatment.

Parents help administer the injections at home. Injection sites include your child’s buttocks, stomach, arms, and legs.

How long does treatment last?

Pediatric growth hormone deficiency treatment can last until your child’s growth is complete, which might take many years.

You might notice results about 3-4 months after beginning the injections. The earlier growth hormone treatment begins, the better chance your child has at reaching their full adult height potential.

If your child is much shorter than their peers, see the pediatricians at Newport Children’s Medical Group by scheduling an appointment over the phone.