Growth hormone deficiency is a condition in which the body doesn’t produce enough growth hormone. About one in 3,500 elementary-school children are affected. It can result in delayed puberty and poorer than expected growth. However, growth rates are improved in most children who are treated with growth hormone replacement therapy.
Diagnosing growth hormone deficiency typically starts with a physical exam by a physician to help them determine if there are any signs of slowed growth.
Your doctor will check your weight, height, and body proportions, and most likely run blood tests.
Blood Tests for Growth Hormone Deficiency
- Binding protein levels (IGF-I and IGFBP-3) blood tests to show whether the growth problem is caused by the pituitary gland
- Blood tests to measure the amount of growth hormone levels in the blood
- Blood tests to measure other levels of hormones the pituitary gland produces
- GHRH-arginine test
- Growth hormone stimulation test
- Insulin tolerance test
Other Exams and Tests to Diagnose Growth Hormone Deficiency
In addition to blood tests, your doctor may perform some additional exams and tests to help diagnose growth hormone deficiency.
- A dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scan measures your bone density.
- An MRI of the brain may be taken so your doctor can see the pituitary gland and hypothalamus.
- Hand x-rays (typically of the left hand) can also help show your doctor your bones: Shape and size of bones change as a healthy person grows. Your doctor can see bone abnormalities with this x-ray.
- X-rays of the head can show any problems with the bone growth of your skull.
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- 22 Aug 2018
- FOSRX/FAST Services