From Chelsea, Massachusetts, USA:
My 4 year old nephew was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes about a year and a half ago. Recently his pediatrician determined he is 5 inches under what should be his normal height. Is this the result of the diabetes, and is there anything that can be done to ensure he "catches up" to what would be normal height for his age?
A common explanation of the story you describe is that your nephew has an associated thyroid deficiency. This is usually straightforward to diagnose with appropriate laboratory tests and treatment should lead to some, if not complete, catch up growth.
I would be surprised if your nephew's pediatrician has not already considered this possibility; but his parents should discuss this and other diagnoses with him/her and if necessary tactfully suggest a referral to a pediatric endocrinologist who would have experience in both diabetes and growth problems. They should take records of height and weight since infancy with them, if these are available.
Original posting 13 Jun 97
Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:08:54
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