Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Puritas Organic Gold Presents Walk-a-thon in Support of Children with Growth Disorders

Puritas Organic Gold, a fulvic-infused, organic, naturally stable, high alkaline water, invites Los Angeles community members to Walk for Kids Growth on Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013 at the Griffith Park in Los Angeles. Participants can register online at

The Walk for Kids Growth event will benefit the Human Growth Foundation and the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles Center for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, as well as increase awareness of childhood growth disorders and to raise funds for research, education, support and advocacy. Registration is $10 for Youth 18 and under and $15 for adults.
The event is from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Various Puritas Organic Gold stations will be set up at registration/check-in location, along the 3-mile path to keep walkers hydrated, as well as at the celebrity Meet & Greet location.

“We are so proud to be a part of this worthy cause and this GROWing solution,” says Puritas Brand project manager Karen Nelson. “With the help of the Los Angeles community, we can increase awareness of childhood growth disorders and ensure that children get early diagnosis and treatment. All children deserve to grow and live a healthy, happy life.”

Walk for Kids Growth is hosted by actor/comedian Mark Christopher Lawrence ("GLEE" and "Chuck") and KABC Radio host Dr. Tony O'Donnell.

Following the walkathon, participants are invited to a silent auction, celebrity Meet & Greet autograph signings and enjoy entertainment provided by 2-U-Neek, Sophie Rose and headline performer IM5 (founded by "American Idol" creator Simon Fuller, media icon Perez Hilton and acclaimed tour director Jamie King)! Raffle prizes, giveaways and refreshments will also be provided. Prizes will be awarded for the top individual fundraiser and top team fundraiser.
Research shows 48% of children in the United States evaluated with the two most common forms of growth failure have gone undiagnosed.

Walk for Kids Growth is sponsored by Puritas Organic Gold, Hudson Audio Works, KABC Radio, Genentech, Endo Pharmaceuticals, EMD Serono, CVS Caremark, Novo Nordisk, Lilly, Costco, Pfizer, Alexion Pharmaceuticals, and Dexa Percy.
For more information about Walk for Kids Growth, to register or donate online, please visit

About Puritas Organic Gold: Puritas Organic Gold is FDA tested and approved naturally stable high alkaline water, infused with USDA certified organic fulvic acid. Puritas Organic Gold offers a smooth and refreshing taste, while containing more than 77 natural and rare elements. The patented fulvic acid blend contains ionic minerals that with their electric charge can help increase oxygen flow and the absorption of minerals into tissues, thereby improving nutrition and total body health. For more information, visit

Monday, November 11, 2013

Participants Wanted

One of our sponsors is looking for participants for a research study right here in Los Angeles (and other locations). Take a look!
Trotta Associates in Los Angeles, Dallas by Definition in Dallas, and Taylor Research in San Diego are seeking the opinions of patients /caregivers with any of the following conditions:
  • Children diagnosed with: 
    • Growth Hormone Deficiency (GHD)
    • Turner Syndrome (TS)
    • Noonan Syndrome (NS)
    • Small for Gestational Age (SGA)
  • Adults who are currently diagnosed with Growth Hormone Deficiency (A-GHD)
  • Caregivers/parents for any of the above.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Walk for Kids Growth - December 7, 2013 - Los Angleles - Register Today!

Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles Center for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism in partnership with the Human Growth Foundation will host a  4.8K Walk for Kids Growth ( community event on Saturday, December 7, 2013 from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Griffith Park, in Los Angeles.

Walk for Kids Growth will increase awareness of childhood growth disorders, early diagnosis and treatment, and to raise funds for research, education, support and advocacy. Individuals of all ages and groups can register to participate at

Walk for Kids Growth is hosted by award-winning TV/film actor/comedian Mark Christopher Lawrence (“GLEE” and “Chuck”) and KABC Radio host Dr. Tony O’Donnell. Live entertainment will be provided by the hugely popular boy band IM5 (founded by Simon Fuller, creator of “American Idol” and Perez Hilton), along with 2-U-NEEK, Sophie Rose and more.

The fun-filled, community event will also feature display booths, refreshments, auction, giveaways, and a celebrity Meet & Greet/Autograph signing tent.

This year’s event sponsors are (as of October 12, 2013) KABC Radio, Genetech, EMD Serono, Novo Nordisk, Dexa Percy, and Puritas Organic Gold.

$10 for youth under 18 
$15 for adults

Entry fees include entrance into the park, event tee shirt, refreshments 
(while supplies last) and access to the Celebrity Meet & Greet.

Walk as in individual or form a team.

Be part of a growing solution!

Register online at


Research shows 48% of children in the United States evaluated with the two most common forms of growth failure have gone undiagnosed.

“Our mission is for the entire Los Angeles community to get involved on December 7th,” says Dr. Duke Pitukcheewanont, president of Human Growth Foundation and pediatric endocrinologist at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. 

“We need community-wide support to increase awareness of childhood growth disorders so children do not have to suffer from undiagnosed and untreated growth disorders that can last for a lifetime. Children deserve to grow and lead healthy, happy lives.”

For more information about Walk for Kids Growth, to sponsor or donate, contact Daphne Plump at

About the Human Growth Foundation:
The Human Growth Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in 1965 by five families of children with growth disorders.Today, the organization is composed of thousands of parents with children who have various growth disorders, adults who are Adult Growth Hormone Deficient, physicians and other interested healthcare professionals. Their mission is to "help children and adults with disorders related to growth or growth-hormone through education, research, support and advocacy."  For almost fifty years they have been the leader in providing information and educational materials to healthcare providers, affected individuals and the general public. HGF's commitment to expanding & accelerating research into growth or growth-hormone disorders has contributed over $1.5 million to young investigators through their  "Small Grants Program and the Human Growth Foundation Awards Program."  HGF provides two Internet Support Lists-pediatic and adult on their website. For more information about Human Growth Foundation, visit

About Children's Hospital Los Angeles’ Center for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism:
Children’s Hospital Los Angeles is a private, nonprofit hospital that is ranked among the top hospitals in the nation for endocrinology and diabetes care on the U.S. News & World Report Best Children's Hospitals List. One of the three largest endocrine programs in the United States is operated through the hospital's Center for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism. The Center is pioneering pediatric care through basic and clinical research programs for diabetes, obesity, growth, weight management, bone metabolism and endocrinology. For more information about the Children's Hospital Center for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, visit    

Friday, April 26, 2013

Celebrating the 1st Annual Step Up and Walk Event!

And, check out the Event Slideshow below!
Human Growth Foundation hosted its 1st Annual 4.8K Step Up and Walk community event on Sunday, April 21, 2013 at Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Corona, NY. Approximately 300 people attended the walk. The event raised nearly $30,000 and helped raise much needed awareness of childhood growth disorders and funds to continue providing research, education, support and advocacy. 

Sponsors of the 1st Annual 4.8K Step Up and Walk event included EMD Serono (Presenting), Novo Nordisk, Pfizer Bridge Program, Dexa Percy, Ocean Breeze Healthcare, Queens Ledger, Sandoz, Costco (Regal Park,NY), U.S Balloon, Enlightened Ice Cream, Uniqueness Counts, Hula Frog and Parties 2 Go and DJ Noel Cruz. High School supporters include Bayside High School Red Cross Club and the Academy of Public Service-Forest Hills High School. 

The event featured giveaways, exhibit booths, food and beverages provided by Costco, entertainment provided by DJ Noel Cruz and special performances by Donald Trump’s BQ Girls. Top Fundraising Walkers Teri and Kevin Davies and Top Fundraising Team Queens County Community Bank.

HGF Executive Director Patti Costa (L), EMD Serono,
and Dr. Duke Pitukcheewanont (R)
“We were so thrilled to see all of the community support on Sunday morning,” says Dr. Duke Pitukcheewanont, President of Human Growth Foundation. “It is estimated that 10,000 to 15,000 children in the United States have growth failure due to growth hormone deficiency. Community and corporate support is helping us reach more individuals and families affected by growth failure.”

Ocean Breeze Healthcare hands Human Growth Foundation a donation.
The Human Growth Foundation is a national nonprofit organization, headquartered in Glen Head, New York. Its mission is to help children, and adults with disorders of growth and growth hormone through research, education, support, and advocacy. 

The Foundation is dedicated to helping medical science to better understand the process of growth. It is composed of concerned parents and friends of children, and adults, with growth problems; physicians; and, other interested health professionals. 

Human Growth Foundation is dedicated to helping medical science to better understand the process of growth. It is composed of concerned parents and friends of children, and adults, with growth problems; physicians and other interested health professionals. The Foundation focuses on intrauterine growth retardation, Russell-Silver syndrome, Turner's syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, Noonan's syndrome, chondroplasias, and more.

For more information about Human Growth Foundation, visit

Friday, March 22, 2013

All Ages and Leashed Pets are Needed to Step Up and Walk and Help Raise Awareness of Childhood Growth Disorders on April 21st

Human Growth Foundation is calling on all ages and leashed pets to Step Up and Walk on Sunday, April 21, 2013 from 7:00 am to 12:00 pm at Flushing Meadows Park (Fountain of the Planets) in Corona, NY. The event will feature entertainment for all ages, community vendors, giveaways, and awards to Top Fundraising Walkers and Top Fundraising Teams. Participants can register at

Human Growth Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to help children and adults with disorders of growth and growth hormone. “We are building awareness of growth hormone deficiency and the funds to continue critical research, education, support and advocacy. It is estimated that 10,000 to 15,000 children in the United States have growth failure due to growth hormone deficiency,” says Human Growth Foundation President Dr. Pisit “Duke” Pitukcheewanont.

Registrants will receive an Event Tee-Shirt, Continental breakfast, snacks and beverages:

        $10 for Youth under 16
        $25 for Adults

Event sponsors include EMD Serono (presenting sponsor), Novo Dordisk, Dexa Percy, OceanBreeze Healthcare, Queens Community Bank, Uniqueness Counts, Queens Ledger, Sandoz, Costco, Eddie's Pizza Truck and Hula Frog.

Human Growth Foundation is dedicated to helping medical science to better understand the process of growth. It is composed of concerned parents and friends of children, and adults, with growth problems; physicians; and, other interested health professionals. The Foundation focuses on intrauterine growth retardation, Russell-Silver syndrome, Turner's syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, Noonan's syndrome, chondroplasias, and more. For more information about Human Growth Foundation, visit

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Meet Our Sponsors for Step Up and Walk our generous and amazing SPONSORS for making this event possible
Please click on each logo to learn more about each sponsor.
If you OR your company would like to Sponsor Step Up and Walk, contact:

Monday, March 11, 2013

Our Treat!

The first TWO people who register to Step Up and Walk today (3/11), 
will receive a $10 gift certificate to redeem at 

Now that’s a goooooood incentive. 

Register online at 

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Step Up and Walk the Walk

Get Outside and Walk

Do you walk the walk, or just talk the talk, when it comes to supporting worthy causes?
When you walk the walk, by participating in a charity walkathon, you do good things for others while also doing something healthful for yourself.
Walkathons raise much-needed funds for all types of charitable and non-profit organizations. At the same time, walking builds your aerobic endurance, reduces cardiovascular risks, promotes weight loss, and prevents loss of mobility due to aging. It can even lower mortality among people with diabetes.
In keeping with the health rewards of walking as exercise, walkathons often benefit medical research, treatment and education campaigns. The names tell the story: America's Walk for Diabetes (American Diabetes Association), Making Strides Against Breast Cancer (American Cancer Society), The Memory Walk (National Alzheimer's Association), and others.
Although walkathons are held year-round (mall-walking makes that possible in wintertime), their popularity is most visible from spring to fall. Sometimes, it's hard to go for a weekend drive without encountering one. The American Heart Association's Heart Walk attracts more than one million participants at more than 600 events each year. WalkAmerica, the biggest fund-raiser for the March of Dimes, is held in 1,100 communities annually.
Most events cover relatively short distances, from 2K (1.25 miles) to 5K (3.1 miles), although some are marathons (26.2 miles) and half-marathons (13.1 miles). By collecting pledges from sponsors, walkers raise millions of dollars every year.
Walkathons inspire many of us, at all ages and levels of fitness, to get involved. Helping a good cause encourages us to lace up those sneakers and step out when we might not otherwise make the effort.
"When you walk just for the sake of walking, few people are truly motivated and keep it up," says Werner W.K. Hoeger, Ed.D., FACSM, professor of kinesiology and director of the Human Performance Laboratory, Boise State University. "If you have a goal in mind, then that motivates you and gets you going. This is beautiful."
Step Up and Walk - April 21st - Corona, NY

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Help Us Spread the Word!

Please help us spread the word about our 1st Annual 4.8K Step Up and Walk community event.

Double click the image below, download and share with friends, family, colleagues, strangers, on y our blog, on your Facebook page.

TOGETHER we can make a difference. 
Thank you!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Waive and Step Up and Walk for Children with Growth Disorders

Have you registered for Step Up and Walk's April 21st event in Queens, NY?

If not - GOOD!

Because we have some GREAT news for you.

Starting today through February 21, when you register to walk - your friend walks for free.

We're waiving...hello and good bye to the additional registration for two.

So waive with us..!

*Register today for two people and only pay for one!

Register today at

Let's walk to raise awareness of child growth disorders and raise funds for to provide research, education, support and advocacy.

Be part of a growing solution!

*Offer good until February 21, 2013

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Show the Love, Step Up and Walk!

Register to Step Up and Walk with your honey,
and we'll waive their fee from
Feb 14 - 21st!
Register for two - only pay for one.
 Because we LOVE you and your support of children with growth disorders.
So, show us the love - register today!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Step Up and Walk for Children with Growth Disorders: Students, Friends, Family, Colleagues

Step Up and Walk will be an amazing community event, rain or shine! Together we are raising awareness of child growth disorders, adult growth hormone deficiency, and raising funds to continue providing critical research, education, support and advocacy.

This event is for ALL AGES:
friends, family, colleagues, leashed pets ...everyone! 

-- event tee-shirts
-- breakfast
-- refreshments

-- entertainment
-- vendors
-- and more!

(elementary, high school, college/university):
Be a part of a growing solution!

Register to walk as an individual or 
form a super cool team and 
you will receive:

-- letters of recommendation (perfect for school credit, volunteer hours, college applications)

-- certificate of participation


On behalf of all of us at the Human Growth Foundation, 
your efforts touch the entire community. 

Thank you!
Human Growth Foundation

About the Human Growth Foundation:
Human Growth Foundation is 501 (c) nonprofit organization whose mission is to help children, and adults with disorders of growth and growth hormone through research, education, support, and advocacy. 

HGF is dedicated to helping medical science to better understand the process of growth, including intrauterine growth retardation, Russell-Silver syndrome, Turner's syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, Noonan's syndrome, chondroplasias, and more. 

We provide:
--"Starter grants" to encourage research in both physical and psychosocial areas of growth disorders and chondroplasias.

--Discussion Forums for parents of children and adults with growth disorders.

--Awareness/outreach programs to identify and encourage persons with growth disorders to seek appropriate diagnosis and treatment.

--Quarterly newsletter and multiple booklets, and answers questions from the members and the public in support of the above goals.

--Strong partnerships with highly acclaimed pediatric and adult endocrinologists.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Do You Remember Your First Step?

Remember your first step? What a fuss everyone made! And then you continued to walk right on through childhood, adolescence, and into adulthood, but somewhere along the way, like most adults, you probably stopped walking so much. In fact, the percentage of adults who spent most of their day sitting increased from 36.8% in 2000 to 39.9% in 2005! 
Part of the reason may be your hectic, stressful life, with not a moment to spare for recreation or formal exercise. The environment plays a part too; inactivity has been engineered into our lives, from escalators to remote controls to riding lawn mowers to robotic vacuum cleaners to electric toothbrushes to the disappearance of sidewalks and safe places to walk. But research shows that all this automation is bad for our health. 

Besides the main reason to Step Up and Walk on April 21st ...let's look at a few other top reasons to walk...

  1. Walking prevents type 2 diabetes. The Diabetes Prevention Program showed that walking 150 minutes per week and losing just 7% of your body weight (12-15 pounds) can reduce your risk of diabetes by 58%.
  2. Walking strengthens your heart if you're male. In one study, mortality rates among retired menwho walked less than one mile per day were nearly twice that among those who walked more than two miles per day.
  3. Walking strengthens your heart if you're female. Women in the Nurse's Health Study (72,488 female nurses) who walked three hours or more per week reduced their risk of a heart attack or other coronary event by 35% compared with women who did not walk.
  4. Walking is good for your brain. In a study on walking and cognitive function, researchers found that women who walked the equivalent of an easy pace at least 1.5 hours per week had significantly better cognitive function and less cognitive decline than women who walked less than 40 minutes per week. Think about that!
  5. Walking is good for your bones. Research shows that postmenopausal women who walk approximately one mile each day have higher whole-body bone density than women who walk shorter distances, and walking is also effective in slowing the rate of bone loss from the legs.
  6. Walking helps alleviate symptoms of depression. Walking for 30 minutes, three to five times per week for 12 weeks reduced symptoms of depression as measured with a standard depression questionnaire by 47%.
  7. Walking reduces the risk of breast and colon cancer. Women who performed the equivalent of one hour and 15 minutes to two and a half hours per week of brisk walking had an 18% decreased risk of breast cancer compared with inactive women. Many studies have shown that exercise can prevent colon cancer, and even if an individual person develops colon cancer, the benefits of exercise appear to continue both by increasing quality of life and reducing mortality.
  8. Walking improves fitness. Walking just three times a week for 30 minutes can significantly increase cardiorespiratory fitness.
  9. Walking in short bouts improves fitness, too! A study of sedentary women showed that short bouts of brisk walking (three 10-minute walks per day) resulted in similar improvements in fitness and were at least as effective in decreasing body fatness as long bouts (one 30-minute walk per day).
  10. Walking improves physical function. Research shows that walking improves fitness and physical function and prevents physical disability in older persons.

The list goes on, but if I continued, there'd be no time for you to start walking! Suffice to say that walking is certainly good for you!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Why Should You Step Up and Walk...?

....because it DOES make a difference.
Join us on April 21, 2013 and Step Up and Walk.
We're raising awareness of child growth disorders
and funds to provide research, education, support and advocacy.
It's going to be a great day
to make an even greater difference.
Be part of the growing solution!
Can't attend...please make a donation.
Together we CAN make a difference in the lives
of children with growth disorders.
Check out our Event Sponsors! Click here!


Monday, January 28, 2013

A Note from a Belieber with Turners Syndrome

A Twitter follower sent us this letter to share on our blog.  Please read it and understand why it's important to Step Up and Walk with us on April 21st. Walk as an individual or with a team. Together we can make a difference in the lives of children with growth hormone deficiency. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Build a Team!

Build a team and walk to help raise awareness of growth hormone deficiency and funds for research, education, support and advocacy!

With your leadership and the help of your team, Human Growth Foundation’s 1st Annual 4.8K Step Up and Walk fundraiser will be a huge success. Our goal is to raise $48,000, to help provide support for children with various growth disorders and adults with growth hormone deficiency.

Your contribution and dedication to Step Up and Walk as a Team Captain is greatly appreciated. 

Your Efforts Will Be Rewarded!

$100 = $25 Visa Gift Card
$200 = $35 Visa Gift Card
$250 = $50 Visa Gift Card

These incentives will be awarded individually to each person who raises the qualifying amount of funds, whether they are on a team or not, and distributed at the Walk during Registration/Check-in.

In addition, prizes will be awarded to the top fundraisers of the following categories:

Top Two Individuals
Top Two Individual Kids (16 and under)
Top Two Teams
Top Team Kids (16 and under)


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Patterns of Growth

By: Patricia A. Rieser, Family Nurse Practitioner-C
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
From original text by: Robert M. Blizzard, MD

"How tall will my 2-year-old be when he grows up?" 
"Doctor, my 12-year-old daughter is already 5 feet, 10 inches tall. Is there anything I can do to keep her from growing over 6 feet tall?" 
"My child has a cartilage problem and is very short. Will my other children also be short?"

These are questions often asked by parents when the growth of a child seems unusual. What determines how a child grows? How is height inherited? How does one recognize a growth problem? How are growth problems treated? Children may ask parents why they are not as tall as their playmates; parents ask doctors, and doctors ask endocrine (hormone) specialists and geneticists.

There are many causes of slow growth. Some are temporary and merely variations of normal growth patterns, and others are inherited or associated with other physical problems. These require evaluation by a doctor who can differentiate among various types of growth problems. A rule of thumb for parents who suspect a growth problem in their child is that any child who grows less than 2 inches a year after their second birthday should be seen by a physician. One of the most important things a parent can do to safeguard a child's growth and general health is to have the child examined and measured regularly by a pediatrician, family doctor, or other qualified health care provider.

Many of the conditions associated with short stature or abnormal growth can be treated. Researchers are working on developing better methods of diagnosing and treating many types of growth problems. Even though no treatment exists for some of these conditions, there are many ways a child and family may benefit from thorough evaluation of the situation. Doctors, nurses, psychologists, social workers and other professionals can work together to assist children with growth problems and their families in setting and attaining appropriate physical, emotional and educational goals. More information about the psychological and social aspects of growth problems is available in the HGF booklet called "Short & OK."


Let's discuss the process of normal growth before we talk about its variations and abnormalities. While we all start out about the same size at birth, some of us end up tall and some end up short. Most of us wind up with about the same build as our parents - the characteristics a child inherits will reflect those of the parents.

A baby is about 20 inches long at birth (give or take an inch) and will grow another 10 inches over the first year to reach about 30 inches by 1 year of age. During the second year of life, growth is half this fast, so at 2 years of age, the child will be about 35 inches tall. From 2 years until about 12 years of age, the child will grow at a steady rate of 2 to 2-1/2 inches a year. The growth spurt that goes along with adolescence begins at about age 11 in girls and 13 in boys. This pubertal growth spurt usually lasts 2 years and is accompanied by sexual development. Growth ceases between 16 and 18 years of age, when the growing ends of the bones fuse. A person's adult height is determined by many factors, including the heights of his or her parents, the age at which puberty begins and the length and vigor of the pubertal growth spurt. An x-ray of the hand or knee allows the doctor to assess the maturity of the bones (bone age) and estimate how much growth potential remains.


Variations from the usual pattern of growth may occur and still be within the range of normal. Some children are taller than expected at a given age, and some are shorter. Parents are more often concerned when their children are shorter than their age-mates than when they are taller, although most short children fall within the normal range of height.

Many children are short because they have inherited shortness from their parents. Even though the American population is taller than in previous generations, there will always be healthy individuals whose height will be in the low part of the normal range. This is called familial short stature.

A common variant of the usual growth pattern occurs when a child is shorter than average for most of his or her life, then is late entering puberty. This condition is called constitutional growth delay with delayed adolescence or delayed maturation. More boys than girls seek medical attention for this condition, although it is not known whether it is really more common in boys. These children generally are the shortest among their age-mates. A 10-year-old child with this condition may be about the size of a 7-year-old; their bone age and growth potential will also be more like that of a 7-yearold. Typical children with constitutional growth delay have been behind their age-mates in height since very early in childhood, but have continued to grow at a slow normal rate. They will enter puberty 2, 3 or even 4 years later than other children their age, but will have a normal growth spurt and end up about as tall as their parents. It is not unusual for this type of growth pattern to run in families - often a father remembers that he didn't have his growth spurt or begin shaving until much later than other boys his age or a mother remembers being late starting her periods.

This type of growth delay may create stress for a child. Nature's timetable can be speeded up by giving a low dose of sex hormone (testosterone or estrogen), although there is a small risk that this will speed up closure of the growth plates, resulting in a slightly shorter adult height. Studies are being done to determine the physical and psychological effects of growth hormone treatment in children with severe constitutional growth delay; the results of these studies are not yet known.



There are many diseases and disorders that can cause short stature and growth failure. Nutritional deficiencies will cause poor growth eventually - a balanced diet with adequate calories and protein is essential for growth. There are a number of intestinal disorders which may lead to poor absorption of food. Failure to absorb nutrients and energy from food then leads to growth failure. Children with these conditions may have complaints that involve the stomach or intestines (bowels) and may have bowel movements that are unusual in pattern, appearance and odor. Treatment of these conditions often involves a special diet. Normal growth usually resumes after the condition has been treated.

Diseases of the kidneys, lungs and heart may lead to growth failure as a result of inadequate intake of nutrients or buildup of waste products and undesirable substances in the body. Children with diabetes, or "high sugar," may grow slowly, particularly when their blood sugar is not kept near the normal range.

Any disease that is severe, untreated or poorly controlled can have an adverse effect on growth. Severe stress or emotional trauma can also cause growth failure.


One form of extreme short stature is caused by abnormal formation and growth of cartilage and bone. Children with a skeletal dysplasia, or chondrodystrophy, are short and have abnormal body proportions; intelligence is normal. Some chondrodystrophies are inherited, others are not. The underlying causes of most of these skeletal dysplasias are not known, although researchers are working to identify the genetic and biochemical mechanisms that are involved. The chances of parents having a second child with the same problem cannot be estimated until the specific type of skeletal dysplasia is identified from physical examination and bone x-rays. The HGF booklet, "Achondroplasia," provides more information about a common form of this group of bone disorders.

Children who will be very short as adults and adults with short stature may benefit from social contact with others having similar growth problems and with short adults who are living full and happy lives. The Little People of America is an organization that provides opportunities for such contact. More information can be obtained by writing to LPA, P.O. Box 9897, Washington, DC 20016.


Some infants are small at birth. When pregnancy ends earlier than usual, the baby is premature. These babies are small, but usually are normal size given their gestational age (length of time in the womb). However, some infants are shorter and weigh less than they should at birth. In other words, they had a chance to grow in the womb, but did not reach the length and weight they should have for their gestational age. This failure to grow normally in the womb is called intrauterine growth retardation.

This condition may result from a problem with the placenta, the organ in the mother's womb that supplies nutrients and oxygen to the baby. A viral infection, such as German Measles, during pregnancy may affect the placenta and infant and cause intrauterine growth retardation. Sometimes the cause of this condition cannot be identified. Some of these children will remain small throughout life, while others may reach normal size. Because there are so many different causes of intrauterine growth retardation, no single treatment is effective in increasing the height of these individuals. Studies are underway to see if growth hormone is effective in increasing the growth rate and adult height of these children; the results are not yet known. More information about this type of short stature is available in the HGF booklet called "Intrauterine Growth Retardation" (IUGR).


Short stature in girls may be caused by a genetic condition that affects the X chromosome. Chromosomes are small thread-like bodies in the nucleus of each cell; they contain the genetic material that determines the characteristics we inherit. Two of these chromosomes determine sexual development - the X and Y chromosomes. Boys have one X and one Y chromosome, and girls have two X chromosomes. In girls with Turner Syndrome, one of the X chromosomes is misshapen or missing in many or all body cells. Because of this, affected girls are short - they seldom reach 5 feet in height - and may have undeveloped ovaries (female sex glands that produce eggs and female hormones). Intelligence is normal. Turner Syndrome may be suspected because of the presence of certain physical features, but poor growth is sometimes the only sign. This condition is diagnosed by doing a special blood test (karyotype) to look for damaged or missing sex chromosomes. Replacement of the missing ovarian hormones enables these girls to develop normal female sexual characteristics. Treatment with biosynthetic growth hormone appears to be effective in increasing adult height in many of these young women, although long-term studies are still underway. The HGF booklet, "Turner Syndrome," supplies more information about this condition.


One type of unusual growth pattern is caused by the early onset of adolescence. This pattern occurs more frequently in girls than boys. The term sexual precocity is used to describe this condition, which includes early development of adult sexual characteristics. Children with sexual precocity grow rapidly and are tall for their age initially, but their bones also mature rapidly, so they stop growing at an early age and may be short as adults. A recently developed synthetic hormone (LHRH) is useful in halting this type of early sexual development and allowing additional growth. Studies are underway to determine if the addition of growth hormone to this regimen increases adult height of children with sexual precocity.

Sometimes a tumor or disease of the ovaries, adrenal glands, pituitary gland or brain will cause premature sexual development. In these cases, removal of the tumor or treatment of the disease may interrupt the rapid sexual development and result in increased adult height.


Hormone deficiencies may cause growth failure in addition to other problems. A child with thyroid hormone deficiency has slow growth and is physically and mentally sluggish. Hypothyroidism, or lack of thyroid hormone, may be present at birth or develop anytime during childhood or later in life. It is very important to treat hypothyroidism promptly, especially if it occurs during the rapid growth period of infancy. Untreated hypothyroidism during this time can cause permanent damage to sensitive, rapidly growing brain cells. Thyroid hormone deficiency is easy to diagnose with a simple blood test and easy to treat with a daily pill that replaces the missing thyroid hormone. With early diagnosis and continuous Deficiency, these children grow and develop normally.


Although many hormones work together to stimulate normal growth, growth hormone is one of the most important. It is produced by a bean-sized gland called the pituitary, which is located beneath a special part of the brain (hypothalamus) in the middle of the skull. The pituitary gland makes other hormones that stimulate other glands, so it is sometimes called the master gland. Pituitary abnormalities can cause a number of problems that result in poor growth: hypothyroidism, discussed earlier, may result from a pituitary malfunction, as may hypercortisolism (excess stress hormone). Growth hormone deficiency may result from abnormal formation of the pituitary gland or hypothalamus, or damage to one of these areas occurring during or after birth.

Children with growth hormone deficiency grow slowly, but have normal body proportions. Without treatment, few would reach 5 feet in height as adults. A variety of tests may be necessary to diagnose this condition. A child with growth hormone deficiency also may be missing other pituitary hormones, (thyroid, adrenal or stress hormones, sex hormones). All hormones must be present in the proper balance for normal growth to occur, so these hormones must be replaced if they are missing. Biosynthetic human growth hormone, produced by recombinant DNA technology, is available for the Deficiency of growth hormone deficiency. Children who are treated promptly and respond well to treatment can expect to reach normal adult height. More information about this condition is presented in the HGF booklet, "Growth Hormone Deficiency."


Most tall children have tall parents and are healthy and normal, but there are some medical conditions that cause abnormal tall stature and rapid growth. A small tumor in the pituitary gland may cause too much growth hormone to be secreted, resulting in unusually fast growth and tall stature. Growth hormone excess (also called acromegaly) may be treated with medication or with surgical removal of the tumor. Some genetic conditions cause abnormal tall stature; Marfan's syndrome and Klinefelter's syndrome are two examples. These syndromes are associated with distinctive physical traits in addition to tall stature. Precocious puberty, discussed earlier, results in tall stature during childhood, although early closure of the growth plates results in short adult height.

Tall children, like short children, may stand out from their classmates and experience stress and teasing because of their size. They often look older than they are, so adults may expect too much of them. it is important for parents and teachers to be aware of the stress these children may experience as a result of looking different from their peers.

The Human Growth Foundation is a national organization of parents of children with growth problems and other interested persons. Chapters of HGF are located in major cities across the nation. The members of HGF help to:

  • educate the public about growth problems
  • refer children with growth problems for evaluation
  • provide information about growth problems to affected families
  • provide guidance for the physical, psychological and social development of children with growth problems
  • teach short children to cope with living in a bigger world
  • sponsor research on growth
  • raise funds for these activities

You can help your child and the thousands of children with growth problems by participating in the activities of HGF.

Join us on April 21, 2013 and help raise awareness of growth hormone deficiency and funds to continue providing research, education, support and advocacy. Together...we CAN make a difference. 

The Human Growth Foundation is a non-profit volunteer organization. Its mission is to help individuals with growth-related disorders, their families, and health care professionals through education, research, and advocacy. It is composed of concerned parents and friends of children with growth problems and interested health professionals. Its objectives include:

  • Support of research
  • Family education, service and support
  • Public education
  • Education of health care professionals
  • Advocacy on behaff of individuals with growth problems and their families