Sunday, August 9, 2009


Many of you have read my posts recently about concerns over Olivia's growth. She is back down to about 19.7 lbs and between 29-30 inches tall. I am very proud of her growth. She was born at 1 lb 1.5 oz and 11.5 inches long! She's happy, healthy, petite and perfect. So, why am I concerned about it? At her 18 month appt, she was well below the 1% on her growth chart and her doctor was concerned because she is no longer following her own curve. He said if he is not pleased with her growth at her 2 year appt, he wants to run some tests to see if she is deficient in growth hormones. Some children who were born extremely premature have to take daily growth hormone injections. I do not want this!! It is controversial because some parents do this just so their children do not grow up to be small or short, but are not deficient in anything. I'm sure that some children may need them, but the thought scares me. I don't expect Olivia to be very big. . .I'm barely 5'2" and Ryan isn't that tall either. I just want her to be happy and healthy. I know I shouldn't worry about this unless I have to, but I just wanted Olivia to be big enough at her 2 year appt so that the conversation doesn't even happen. Does anyone have any information on this? I just want to be prepared before her appointment in case it is brought up. Here is an article that kind of explains what I'm talking about.


Sarah M. said...

I bet he wants to run the tests to rule out the growth hormone deficiency, because that would mean that if she's not lacking in the hormones, she's possibly lacking in calories, and if she's not lacking in calories, well, she's just small, hehe. At least, when we started the entire "do we tube, do we not" for serious with Sydney last summer, the absolute first thing we did was an entire panel of blood work. I don't have it in front of me right now, but I want to say that hormone deficiency was one of the things tested for. So your pediatrician might not be going straight to the idea that she needs GH...more just trying to get a better picture of what's going on with her and making sure he's not letting anything slip through the cracks.

McTriplet Mommy said...

Hey, Jodi! First want to say this is my personal opinion and experience and not related to my place of employment... etc., etc., etc. :)

My "middle" son, Isaac, has a significant growth hormone deficiency. Like you said about Olivia - none of our kids are going to be tall. I'm 5' 5" and Scott (hubby) is 5' 8". Sullivan and Lorne (the other two boys) are all in the 5-10% growth curves for their age - but Isaac dropped off completely right around age 2 - though our dr wouldn't send us for the testing until age 3 to see if he caught up in the meantime (he didn't). The test was long but "easy" (Isaac slept through most of it!) and showed he had a significant deficiency so we started the shots.

They were difficult to get used to for the first week or so (what 3-year-old would WANT to take daily injections?!) but are so much a part of our routine now. He'll remind us if we forget them and is wonderful about them. Not to jump the gun - but just so you know in case you DO go that route.

My understanding is that the shots only help if you HAVE a deficiency though and wouldn't do any good if you are "just" short - but your article says otherwise so maybe I'm wrong! Not sure where I picked up that bit of info. :) Another thing they explained to us was that it isn't *just* height - it's health. The shots don't just help him get taller - they help him grow.... his height but also his heart, his lungs, his brain - everything.

It was a BIG decision (as you can imagine!) as to whether or not we wanted to do the shots. We think he is perfect and wonderful if he's 2 feet tall or 6 feet tall. I think it's also maybe a bit different for girls where petite is cute. :) We have seen fantastic results with the shots - he is now the height (within an inch) of both of his brothers! He's been on them for about 18 months and will continue through puberty. Here is a link to our experience with Isaac's test and my thoughts about the test results when we first got them.

Hang in there - maybe she'll surprise you and be so BIG by her two year that the dr won't even send you for testing! :)


mommyof2 said...


One of my very best friends had a very early delivery like you delivered a boy at just shy of 2 lbs.(Was in the NICU for over 100 days too) Today, he is turning 10 yrs this Dec. He is VERY skinny and "petite" but he too fell off "his" own chart. So at age 4 yrs started the GH shots daily. It was very hard for Mom to give the shots, but knew if she didn't he would not be healthy. Today, he is still on the shots. They did a trial run of 90 days w/o the shots, and he fell off the "growth wagon". So he will be on these shots daily thru puberity. He doesn't even care or really notice the shots being given. I think its more of us adults dreading the thought of giving the actual shot vs it hurting. So, if you have to end up giving them to her, just know your motherly instinct will kick and and you will just get used to it (:

Heather said...

Jodi, I am a NICU nurse and have taken care of several children that have required growth hormone therapy. I would be happy to talk with you if you have any questions. My email is

Anonymous said...


One of my seniors this year took growth hormones her entire life (stopping only two years ago at about 5 feet). She is beautiful, smart, and looks perfect in every way.

She is taking Anatomy and wants to be in the health profession BECAUSE of what happened to her.

Olivia will be fine, I promise!