“People called me ‘Shorty.’ I wasn’t too happy about that,” said Lauren Pozmanter. But that was two years ago, when at age 12 she “stood out like a sore thumb,” she said.” Just 4-foot-5, she was one of the shortest kids in her class.
Today, Pozmanter is a hair’s breadth under 5 feet tall. In jeans, T-short and high wedge heels, she blends in perfectly with the 14-year-old crowd. The East Setauket teenager’s phenomenal growth spurt of almost 7 inches in the past two years is directly attributable to the daily injections of synthetic growth hormone she took from age 12 until her bones fused recently in puberty.
Medical tests done when she was 12 revealed that Pozmanter has a condition known as growth hormone deficiency. Her body does not produce enough growth hormone to stimulate normal growth. Tests done at that time by a pediatric endocrinologist further determined she was not about to grow much taller without medical intervention. Pozmanter’s younger sister and brother, Kristen and Matthew, 9-year-old twins, have been similarly diagnosed. Both have begun to catch up to their peers in height.
“We knew nothing about this condition at all,” said the children’s mother, Lynn, who, like her husband, Murray, is of average height. “Lauren always asked us why she was so short and we would say, “You’ll grow, you’ll grow,’ not knowing she wasn’t going to. This was all news to us. When the pediatrician said, “Go see an endocrinologist, “Lauren had fallen off the growth chart.
Medical science has made it possible for extremely short, pre-pubescent children who meet certain criteria to have grotwh hormone to grow and develop.
Human Growth Foundation, a national, non-profit organization whose mission is to help children and adults with disorders of growth and growth hormone will host its first annual 4.8K Step Up and Walk on Sunday, April 21, 2013 from 7:00 am to 12:00 pm at Flushing Meadows – Corona Park in Queens, New York.
The event will feature dignitaries, celebrities, entertainment for all ages, community vendors, giveaways, and awards to Top Fundraising Walkers and Top Fundraising Teams.
Step Up and Walk will allow Human Growth Foundation to:
- provide "starter grants" to encourage research in both physical and psychosocial areas of growth disorders and chondroplasias
- host Discussion Forums for parents of children, and adults, with growth disorders
- conduct awareness/outreach programs to identify and encourage persons with growth disorders to seek appropriate diagnosis and treatment