An analysis of demographic and etiological factors of children and adolescents with short stature in the rural tertiary center- An observational study

Dixa Shah, Sunil Pathak, Ashutosh Singh Rathore, Prashant Modi, Dhrumika Sheth, Mayur Shah


Objectives: (i) To determine pattern of and proportion of various etiology of short stature. (ii) To determine relationship of the Standard Deviation Score (SDS) with etiology.
Materials and Methods: This non-analytic observational study, assessed demographic parameters, anthropometry and etiology associate with short stature adolescents and children (6 months to 18 years). Short stature was defined as length/ height for age < 3rd centile or < -2 SD as per age & gender specific growth charts.
Results: Out of 105 subjects, 22 were 6 months to < 5 years age, 33 were 5 to 10 years age and 50 were 10 to < 18 years age with M: F ratio of 1.28:1. Average value of chronological age, height age, and height SDS were 8.86 years, 5.62 years, and – 3.44 SD, respectively. 45.71% subjects were malnourished. Idiopathic short stature (24.7%), chronic renal diseases (12.3%) and endocrine disorders (12.3%) were found as etiology common in all three age groups. Chronic neurological diseases (9.5%) were more common in 6
months to < 5-year age group; while endocrine disorders (16%), respiratory diseases (12%), gastrointestinal diseases (8%), and renal diseases (8%) were common in adolescents. The maximum average height SDS (-2.3 0.2) was observed with normal variants; while the lowest average SDS (-4.8 2.0) was observed with syndromic short stature children.
Conclusion: Malnutrition was significant co-existing factor in pathological short stature. The common etiology of pathological short stature varied with different age groups. The SDS is important in deciding evaluation plan for particular short stature case.

Keywords: Pathological short stature, Normal variants,  Etiology malnutrition, Idiopathic short stature, Standard deviation score

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