Growth Hormone Deficiency in kids? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-08-2010, 02:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks Tanya, for the insights - makes sense!

half-pint - great to have a local's view on the system. Thank you for sharing your experiences. I'm glad to hear that it is helping your son!

I talked to DH about it last night, and so far so good - he's on board. I will be purchasing some Blue Ice CLO, and have told the kids 'no more soy milk'. DS has had a couple of servings of 'vanilla rice milk' tonight and like it. I will not be too picky about small amounts of soy lecithin in foods, and will cut down the tofu intake to maybe once a month. I went to my butcher and they gave me some mostly grass fed, all natural local beef bones (and for free!), so they are in a pot now, simmering away.

I'm really hoping that this is the cause and while I don't expect them to be even average height, as DH and I certainly aren't, if they catch up to 3 or 5%and stay with that curve, I'll be happy!

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Old 03-12-2010, 06:28 PM
 
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I'm so jealous on the bones, that's awesome! I wouldn't worry about soy lecithin either, I believe that is hormone free. Make sure you get a regular daily source of K2 as well.

And yes re: no sunscreen in middle of day! Now we do use hats and shirts but believe me I'm as surprised as you as we are very fair skinned. As Tanya said, apparently eating the standard American diet of high omega 6 fatty acids vs. eating traditionally balanced omega 6 and 3's are a factor. I used to be sunscreen queen and it has noticably changed.

Re: why are there tall kids on a standard American Diet?

Low vitamin A could also be a factor:

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One aspect of vitamin A that deserves more emphasis is its role in protein utilization. Kwashiorkor is as much a disease of vitamin-A deficiency, leading to impaired protein absorption, as it is a result of absence of protein in the diet. High-protein, lowfat diets are especially dangerous because protein consumption rapidly depletes vitamin-A stores. Children brought up on high-protein, lowfat diets often experience rapid growth. The results—tall, myopic, lanky individuals with crowded teeth, and poor bone structure, a kind of Ichabod Crane syndrome—are a fixture in America.
http://www.westonaprice.org/Vitamin-A-Saga.html
I see a lot of adults who are tall with poor palate width, weak chins and crowded teeth. The body obviously has not gotten enough nutrients to support its genetic potential.
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Old 03-15-2010, 03:20 AM
 
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Although personally in your situation I would be following the Weston Price protocol of 1/4-1/2 tsp. of high vitamin cod liver oil and a form of K2 three times per day (depending on type whether it is short acting MK-4 or long acting MK-7) with every meal to correct mineral deficiencies.
JaneS: Would you suggest additional K2 supplementation if you are taking fermented cod liver oil (I believe it has higher amounts of K2 than regular CLO). I ask because we stopped supplementing K2 when we went on fermented CLO, now I wonder if that was a mistake.

OP: I'll find the reference tomorrow, but I read somewhere that gluten intolerance and celiacs can be responsible for slow/no growth. Sometimes slow growth is the only symptom. If I remember the study correctly it said something like 25% of the children seen for no/slow growth actually started growing when gluten was removed from their diets. My dn stopped growing when he was 3 for several years, so I did a little internet research on the subject.
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Old 03-15-2010, 03:23 AM
 
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Not the actual study I read before, but here are a few abstracts:

http://www.springerlink.com/content/j021644p5l173514/

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15273508
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Old 03-15-2010, 03:27 AM
 
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Re: why are there tall kids on a standard American Diet?

Low vitamin A could also be a factor:

I see a lot of adults who are tall with poor palate width, weak chins and crowded teeth. The body obviously has not gotten enough nutrients to support its genetic potential.
This is getting off-topic, but it's interesting that when I changed our diet (cut out gluten and dairy, added a lot more saturated fat, started the homemade stock and such, and somewhere in there started getting more regular with the CLO), both my kids got %-wise shorter. They were 1.5yo and just shy of 4yo--so quite the age gap, but they lost their height-weight gap at the same time (used to be higher % for height than weight, now they both match).

It makes me wonder about how common subclinical health issues really may be--not full-blown whatever, but more subtle stuff that's off.
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Old 03-15-2010, 03:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the info JaneS and the links, isaoma. Yes, I can't remember if I mentioned Celiacs as a possibility to look into, but yes, since I'd read some people don't have any real symptoms, it has been on my radar. I've booked an appointment with our GP so we can go back to the ped to review what he actually tested for. I know he did cystic fibrosis, but apart from that, with a blood test and stool test, I'm not sure what he actually tested DD for. I'll see if he checked for Celiac and growth hormone. I'm tempted to use this home test for Celiac: http://celiachometest.com/

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Old 03-18-2010, 04:30 AM
 
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JaneS: Would you suggest additional K2 supplementation if you are taking fermented cod liver oil (I believe it has higher amounts of K2 than regular CLO). I ask because we stopped supplementing K2 when we went on fermented CLO, now I wonder if that was a mistake.
Depends, is it elsewhere in your diet?
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Old 05-01-2010, 01:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So, we got in to see the ped this afternoon and he said my DD is still below 0%, but growing steadily. He still suspects there is nothing wrong, and she is just short due to genetics. Previously he had tested for CF, plus kidney function, proteins, iron, thyroid and a few others that I can't remember now, but is sending us to the lab for a Celiac test, other blood work including thyroid, a bone age xray and referring us to a ped endocrinologist who will review the chart and decide if a growth hormone test is warranted. He was also great with the kids - I love this Dr.

We have been doing Carlson's CLO, plus a multivitamin with A and D, no more soy milk, and some bone broths. I was at the grassfed beef store today and they happened to have a special on green pastures fermented CLO gummy fish, and I was about to buy a jar, but asked if I could try one first. I ate half (I thought it was not great, but OK) and gave half to DS (the more adventurous eater of my two) who promptly spit it out saying 'it tastes yucky', so I will be continuing with my current CLO, which they tolerate if washed down with orange juice.

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Old 05-01-2010, 09:50 AM
 
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Those gummy fish are nasty. Wish I could return the ones I bought.

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Old 05-01-2010, 12:16 PM
 
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Those tests sound good, I was just going to come back here and mention thyroid function in fact.

A multivitamin with vit. A is probably in chemical palmitate form and not natural retinol? Palmitate is useless at best and toxic at worst.

Vitamin D to keep blood levels up in Canada will need to be many times more than the RDA that's in a multi ... best to get tested and do high doses www.vitamindcouncil.org
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Old 05-01-2010, 12:22 PM
 
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And it probably would be worth mentioning that if only TSH is checked for thyroid function it might not be sufficient... TSH is a pituitary hormone only. If there is problems with the pituitary, TSH will be low. Testing it only will make the doctor say, "What great thyroid function you have!" when in fact the pituitary (or hypothalamus) will not be firing the signals correctly. I'd be looking for other thyroid hormones to be tested as well.
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Old 05-01-2010, 11:36 PM
 
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So is there an A supplement that is good to use other than high vitamin clo?
My son has a bleeding disorder and can only do CLO twice a week, when he's high on his meds, and even then I have to give him just a miniscule amount or he gets huge bruises. So we are big on alternatives to CLO for him. He is six, and will swallow pills, so I give him frozen liver "pills" -- basically just raw frozen liver cut into pill-size pieces. If that doesn't float your boat, you can add liver to hamburgers, etc. Liver is very high in A.

This year I started rendering our own lard and using it as our main saute oil. It has a good amount of D in it if it comes from pastured pigs. I also supp with extra D. As a side note, we are burning less easily this summer so far -- even my son who doesn't get fish oil, so I'm wondering if the lard is helping with sun tolerance.

Liver also has K2 in it. Goose liver has the most, chicken liver next, then beef liver. I'm currently searching for a source of grass-fed goose liver.

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Old 05-01-2010, 11:47 PM
 
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Hmmm...we have a nightlight in the hallway, and there's a clock radio with a display in her room...interesting. I might close their door at night to block light (their door is next to the stairwell, hence the nightlight). Thanks for the tip!

Are there any studies about longterm use of melatonin in kids, and for what dosage?
Yes, even a flashlight shone behind the knee can stop melatonin production. The skin senses light, and light stops melatonin production. Look on the hibernation diet thread in the TF forum for links to those studies. Streetlights matter too.

There is some evidence that long-term use of melatonin may suppress the body's ability to make its own. I can't find the study right now... maybe look on pubmed?

Melatonin is also one of the body's big defenses against cancer. People working the night shift have increase rates of cancer because of their decreased levels of melatonin, a finding confirmed in mouse studies. So, yeah, turn out those lights! You can also buy a red lightbulb if you really need light -- red light allows 70% more melatonin production to occur than regular light.

Melatonin also is what shuts the adrenals off and gives them a rest, and regulates fertility hormones, and supports weight loss/healthy weight. The list goes on. A couple of TBS of honey right before bed, combined with sleeping in darkness, will stimulate the body to make more melatonin on its own.

Was that more than you wanted to know?

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Old 06-04-2010, 03:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Man, oh man, is this ever confusing!

The latest: we got a wrist xray done which says her bone age is 4.5 VS her chronological age which is 5.5 Dr says this is good, because it probably means she will continue to grow to 14 instead of 13, for instance. I stopped growing at 12, but DH doesn't remember when he did, and I guess it's possible he was a 'late bloomer' in terms of growth and she inherited that from him.

We actually got into the ped endrocrinologist earlier this week - they took a complete history, and did ask some about diet and supplements, but of course were of the mindset that a multi vit once a day would be enough for the kids. The Dr mentioned Vit D with our northern climate and all, but said either CLO or a multi would be enough. He was adamant that a Vit D deficiency wasn't the reason she was short.

Blood test came back negative for Celiac (what a relief!), and normal levels for all the other stuff, but like someone mentioned, the thyroid levels are the TSH, which may not indicate a problem. The only one that hadn't come back was IVF5 or something like that which is a byproduct of growth hormone. They test for that first, and if it's low, then they test for growth hormone which is more time consuming and invasive for the child. They said a GH deficient child would not follow any sort of growth curve, like my DD is doing. Her curve is following roughly the same slope as the regular curve - it looks as if she just few very little maybe between 1 and 3. They want to monitor her growth and see her again in 6mo and after a while will determine if GH testing is needed. He said GH therapy is very expensive, about 10-20K per year and is it worth that, and daily injections for 10 years to be taller by a couple of inches? He said if she is GH deficient, that's one thing, but apparently some people who aren't deficient still take the therapy to be taller.

We are still generally off soy, with tofu maybe once a month only. I phoned Carlson's about the Vit A in their CLO and was told it was 'the natural palmitate'. Not sure about whether this is good or bad, but hopefully good?

I got some flying fish and masago roe today and DS, who loves fish, tried some and declared it yucky. I've been trying to find a tolerable multi with the highest levels of D and A, but since palmitate is bad, I've been looking for beta carotene, which is not the best, but not as bad as palmitate? I also got some Vit D drops with 400IU of cholecalciferol, which is good if they get around 1000 IU daily?

I'm still doing the bone broths, and make soup 1-2 times a week which they'll have some of, and use it to make rice and quinoa, which they'll also have some of, but they have refused to have it plain.

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Old 06-04-2010, 06:54 PM
 
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I just wanted to update that we finally have a diagnosis for my dd, she has hypothyroidism. Which now that I've done some research on it, makes sense because besides being short she has also not had any teeth fall out yet, and she is almost 7 1/2. She will be taking Synrthroid and will be retested in about 6 weeks to see if the levels need to be adjusted.

Also want to add that her bone age scan showed that she had the bones of a 4 1/2 year old, if that information helps anyone here!
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Old 06-04-2010, 07:22 PM
 
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I just wanted to update that we finally have a diagnosis for my dd, she has hypothyroidism. Which now that I've done some research on it, makes sense because besides being short she has also not had any teeth fall out yet, and she is almost 7 1/2. She will be taking Synrthroid and will be retested in about 6 weeks to see if the levels need to be adjusted.

Also want to add that her bone age scan showed that she had the bones of a 4 1/2 year old, if that information helps anyone here!
Glad you have a dx & a course of action. What were her symptoms besides being small? Did they dx by blood test?

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Old 06-04-2010, 08:31 PM
 
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I just wanted to update that we finally have a diagnosis for my dd, she has hypothyroidism. Which now that I've done some research on it, makes sense because besides being short she has also not had any teeth fall out yet, and she is almost 7 1/2. She will be taking Synrthroid and will be retested in about 6 weeks to see if the levels need to be adjusted.

Also want to add that her bone age scan showed that she had the bones of a 4 1/2 year old, if that information helps anyone here!

I would read this site to learn about the serious problems with Synthroid T4 only medication and also the misinterpretations of testing using TSH only.
www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/

Did you have her anti thyroid and anti tpo antibodies tested for Hashimoto's? That is the most common cause of hypothyroidism and has other implications for treatment rather than the standard mainstream medicine view (most dr's won't test it b/c they view it as the same but it is an autoimmune disease with non celiac gluten intolerance as a primary etiology.)
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:40 PM
 
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Glad you have a dx & a course of action. What were her symptoms besides being small? Did they dx by blood test?
Yes, she was dx by blood test. I don't have her numbers yet but will update once I do, I didn't think to ask when her Dr called. Besides being small (having gone from 30 percentile in height to 1 percentile over the last two years), she had not yet lost any of her baby teeth, has extremely dry skin, she fatigued quickly during physical activity and had bouts of constipation.
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Old 06-04-2010, 09:10 PM
 
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I would read this site to learn about the serious problems with Synthroid T4 only medication and also the misinterpretations of testing using TSH only.
www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/

Did you have her anti thyroid and anti tpo antibodies tested for Hashimoto's? That is the most common cause of hypothyroidism and has other implications for treatment rather than the standard mainstream medicine view (most dr's won't test it b/c they view it as the same but it is an autoimmune disease with non celiac gluten intolerance as a primary etiology.)
Thank you for the information. She has only gone through the first round of testing and I'm barely learning about her condition so bear with me . She has not been tested for Hashimoto's but I will talk to her Dr about it. She was tested for celiacs but those results have not come in yet. Is the treatment for non celiac gluten intolerance a GF diet?
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:25 PM
 
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My husband is about 5' 4". He had growth hormones as a child, but it was experimental back then. He was from Central America and his family drove him to NY a few times in the 70s and 80s for injections but it became a hassle, so they continued with a doctor in their country who supposedly could get the hormone. I read that a lot of the kids who got the hormones, both in the US and abroad back then ran into problems in adulthood, because often times the hormones were taken from people who were sick...they didn't test people who donated...something like that. I am sure it is a lot safer now.

 

In any case, I am guessing they didn't know much about growth hormones back then, and he didn't get enough of it, or he didn't get it soon enough..otherwise he would have grown a bit more. His dad is at least 5' 10", but his mom is about 5'0". One of his sisters is at least 5'9" and one is about 5'5" and the other is 5'0". The sister who is 5'0" married a man who is on the shorter side 5'8"ish, and their two boys are very small. She is going to do growth hormones with both of them. Not sure why. I asked her if the doctors know why they are so small and she looked at me like I was dumb and pointed to her mom and herself. I just thought that growth hormones seems extreme unless there is a genetic issue or a gland that is not working, etc...If they turn out to be their father's height, I don't see a problem. If they turn out to be my husband's height of 5'4" obviously it isn't a problem for me, but I guess men can be discriminated against when they are small, and perhaps certain jobs require a certain height/weight, etc. Her boys are very into "boyish" things like four wheelers and baseball...I suppose to play ball or race professionally, you have to be a certain height. She mentioned that the doctors will also "stop" puberty from happening with drugs, because that will buy them some time to grow a bit. I suppose once you hit puberty, the growing comes to a halt.

 

I haven't had to research it much, as my son seems to be pretty average height so far (I have good height on my dad's side, and I am average height, BUT my mom's side has some serious height issues, as my mom is only 5'0" and her dad was only 5'3". There may have been some poverty/war, illness, rationing of food, etc which contributed, as they are from Europe. My sister's husband is tall, and one of her girls is tiny, but she had tons of steroids due to asthma/allergies. My son has had quite a bit of steroids too, but he hasn't fallen into the "small" category since he was a toddler. He's still pretty average.

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