Unlike short stature, tall stature is a growth disorder that does not usually concern parents. Growth curves, which are divided into percentiles and show the growth rate of the child (height and weight) depending on age, are used to evaluate their normal development. Children over the 97th percentile fall into the tall stature category.
What are the causes of tall stature?
Tall stature may be due to genetic (hereditary) factors, i.e. the child grows and enters puberty normally, but the final height is influenced by hereditary factors (tall parents).
Tall stature can also play a role in early puberty, when children grow tall abruptly and then stop growing. In this case their final height may be short.
Tall stature may also be due to pathological factors such as chromosomal abnormalities, endocrine disorders, obesity, genetic disorders or excessive growth hormone production.
How is pathological tall stature diagnosed?
The endocrinologist will examine the family history, the stage of puberty and the following tests: hand and wrist x-ray, hormonal panel, growth hormone levels and imaging of the pituitary gland.
What is the treatment for tall stature?
After reviewing the test results, the endocrinologist will determine the cause and treatment. For example, if it is due to hyperthyroidism, it will be treated with medication.
The Paediatric-Adolescent Diabetes clinic at MITERA Children’s Hospital is run by Dr Nikolaos Kefalas, Paediatrician-Endocrinologist. The team is comprised of nurses, paediatric endocrinologist, psychologist and clinical dietician-nutritionist who oversee the treatment, support and education of children with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, at both the initial diagnosis and during the subsequent progression of the disease.