Perhaps more than any other factor, your youngster's pattern of growth and ultimate height will be influenced by heredity genes..
Female Speaker: Margie and Scott Balogh knew they had a problem when they noticed their three-year-old son Brad wasn't growing compared to their other children. Margie Balogh: He wasn't progressing with his growth. In children that age I remember for my daughter, they're outgrowing their clothes quickly and shoes and things and it just, it wasn't happening. Scott Balogh: A lot of people would say how cute he is and oh! Is he tiny? And at first you take that with a grain of salt thinking, he's cute. But after a little while when you see the other kids growing and start developing more and he's still that little cute boy you start wondering if there is something wrong. Female Speaker: Initially Margie and Scott figured that Brad would eventually grow on his own. But as time went by and Brad didn't grow, they looked for some help from a pediatric specialist. Dr. Richard Levy: We do an entire evaluation try to find the cause of growth problems. Most often, I'm looking for an endocrine problem such as thyroid disease or growth hormone deficiency. Female Speaker: Brad was tested and to the Balogh's surprise, he was diagnosed with growth hormone deficiency. Scott Balogh: I never heard the term. I did not really understand it. I learned a lot through the tests that they were doing on Brad, about the pituitary glands and what's going on inside your brain that creates these hormones and how they work. Before this I've never known anything about any kind of disease like that. Female Speaker: Growth hormone is a chemical produced by the pituitary gland, a dime-sized gland located in the base of the brain between the eyes. This chemical is produced throughout our lives. In children this helps them grow. In adults it helps keep the body healthy. Once it has been determined that a child is growth-hormone deficient, he may be placed on synthetic growth hormone therapy to replace what's missing. There are different medications that contain synthetic growth hormone. For the Baloghs, their pediatric specialist suggested a drug treatment that is injected a couple of times per month. Margie Balogh: We were initially instructed a nurse came out to instruct us on doing it. It seems like everyone is kind of getting somewhat used to the fact that we need to do this. It just takes time to get used to it. The fact that you have to give, someone, you know when your children a shot it's just kind of a strange thing. Female Speaker: It's been ten months since Brad started his treatment and he's showing progress. Dr. Richard Levy: He's grown a good 2.1 centimeters that's very good in the last three months. Female Speaker: This is a good sign that the medication is working. Dr. Richard Levy: Nothing makes a child feel better about being short than growing. And nothing, of course, makes the parent feel better than seeing the child grow. Margie Balogh: I just hope the medication continues to work and help him grow and that there is no obstacle to that. So that he can achieve, you know, his full potential.