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Quick reference medical handouts used by Pediatric offices


My daughter is nine years old, 47" and 48 pounds. She has always been in the 5th percentile for growth and below the 50 percentile for weight. Her father's side of the family is average to below average in size and her mother's side of the family is average in size. Although my daughter appears to be in "perfect" proportion, she has become concerned by her "tiny-ness." Is there reason for alarm? Is there anything we could do to promote growth?
    
Assuming your daughter is exactly nine years old, at 47 inches she would be below the third percentile for height and at 48 pounds she would be slightly above the third percentile for weight. It would be important to establish why she lost this much weight.

It will be important to review all the points on her growth chart (especially from age two on) with your pediatrician or family physician. It will also be important to review with your primary physician the heights of family members. If there has been a significant decrease in the rate of growth, your physician will want to review your child’s and family’s medical history. He or she will do a complete physical examination and may want to do some screening tests. These tests may include evaluation of non endocrine and endocrine causes for poor growth. The endocrine related tests may include thyroid function tests and bone age (skeletal age; x-ray of hand and wrist).

Your primary physician may choose to see your daughter again in 3-4 months to assess her growth rate. If there has been a definite decrease in growth rate your primary physician may recommend referral to a pediatric endocrinologist, who is an expert in growth related problems, at this time or after the rate of growth is compared to other standardized growth rate charts.

 

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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