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When Do Short Children Realize They Are Short?: Prepubertal Short Children's Perception of Height during 24 Months of Catch-Up Growth Hormone Treatment
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Paediatrics.
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2012 (English)In: Hormone Research in Paediatrics, ISSN 1663-2818, Vol. 77, no 4, 241-249 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Aim: To examine perceived height during the first 24 months of growth hormone (GH) treatment in short prepubertal children. Methods: Ninety-nine 3- to 11-year-old short prepubertal children with either isolated GH deficiency (n = 32) or idiopathic short stature (n = 67) participated in a 24-month randomized trial of individualized or fixed-dose GH treatment. Children's and parents' responses to three perceived height measures: relative height (Silhouette Apperception Test), sense of height (VAS short/tall), and judgment of appropriate height (yes/no) were compared to measured height. Results: Children and parents overestimated height at start (72%, 54%) and at 24 months (52%, 30%). Short children described themselves as tall until 8.2 years (girls) and 9 years (boys). Prior to treatment, 38% of children described their height as appropriate and at 3 months, 63%. Mother's height, parental sense of the child's tallness and age explained more variance in children's sense of tallness (34%) than measured height (0%). Conclusion: Short children and parents overestimate height; a pivotal age exists for comparative height judgments. Even a small gain in height may be enough for the child to feel an appropriate age-related height has been reached and to no longer feel short.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 77, no 4, 241-249 p.
Keyword [en]
Children, Growth hormone treatment, Height determination, Height prediction, Puberty, Quality of life, Short stature, Height perception
National Category
Endocrinology and Diabetes
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-57399DOI: 10.1159/000337975ISI: 000305678400006OAI: diva2:541255
Available from: 2012-07-16 Created: 2012-07-16 Last updated: 2012-07-16Bibliographically approved

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Kriström, Berit
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