Endocrinology Book


Failure to Thrive Diagnosis

Aka: Failure to Thrive Diagnosis
  1. See Also
    1. Delayed Growth
    2. Failure to Thrive
    3. Failure to Thrive Causes
    4. Failure to Thrive Red Flags
    5. Failure to Thrive Evaluation
    6. Failure to Thrive Management
  2. Precautions
    1. Defining whether a child's growth is normal is difficult due to conflicting guidelines and growth curves
    2. Diagnosis relies on accurately recorded weight and height on growth chart over time
  3. Evaluation: Initial Criteria (expect False Positives)
    1. Weight for age <5th percentile for gender (or BMI for age <5th percentile, or weight/length <5th percentile)
    2. Weight deceleration that crosses 2 or more major percentile lines
  4. Evaluation: Re-evaluate growth in relation to normal modifiers of growth pattern
    1. Growth may be adequate for genetic predisposition or Breast Feeding versus Bottle Feeding
      1. See Resources under Weight Measurement in Children (particular attention to WHO growth curves)
    2. Interpret trends (3rd percentile may be normal if always following 3rd percentile)
    3. Consider using modified growth charts
      1. Prematurity
      2. Ethnicity
      3. Down's Syndrome
      4. Turner's Syndrome
  5. Evaluation: Further evaluate with most specific indicators of abnormal growth
    1. Weight <75% of median Weight for Length
    2. Weight Velocity <5th percentile
  6. Resources
    1. CDC Growth Charts (includes WHO charts for under age 2 years)
      1. http://www.cdc.gov/growthcharts/
  7. References
    1. Homan (2016) Am Fam Physician 94(4): 295-9 [PubMed]
    2. Olsen (2007) Arch Dis Child 92(2): 109-14 [PubMed]

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