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Quick reference medical handouts used by Pediatric offices


Is it true that a boy's future height can be determined by doubling his height at age two? I am only 5'4 and my husband is 5'10 but my son measued 37 and one half inches at his 2 year appointment. He is the average height of a 34 month old child. Is it possible that he picked up tall genes from my fathers side where the boys range from 6'0 to 6'4?
    
There are two frequently used methods for predicting adult height, based on the fact that a child’s height is influenced by a number of factors, including genetics, gender, and overall health and nutrition.

One method for determining adult height is to consider both genetics and gender. Most healthy children will grow to a height that is somewhere between their mother’s and father’s heights. Using these factors, one method of predicting adult height is to add the parents' heights together, divide by two, then add three inches for a boy (or subtract three for a girl). Based on this method, your son will be around 5' 10" as an adult. While this formula is fairly accurate, a child’s ultimate height can vary by as much as five inches above or below this calculation.

Another second method is to use the child’s height at age three. In boys, the three year old height is 55% of their adult height. In girls, it is 60% of their adult height. We would be curious to see how what the calculation is when your son turns three.

Still another method can be performed to estimate the final adult health. This requires obtaining an X ray of the left hand (Bone age) and using this information along with a contemporaneous height measurement to check final height predictions in the tables in the Atlas of Gruelich and Pyle, a book which is found in many radiology departments

 

As a reminder, this information should not be relied on as medical advice and is not intended to replace the advice of your child’s pediatrician. Please read our full disclaimer.

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