Tall Stature: Causes, Types and Treatments

tall girl sitting on steps.

The term “tall stature” may be used in a variety of ways and generally means a person’s height is above average.  In children, height is measured from birth to track normal growth patterns based on the individual’s circumstance.  While a child’s growth may be significantly faster than normal, they may be perfectly healthy.  However, tall stature may signify an underlying medical condition.

Common Attributes & Causes

School girls hold hands above head and measuring his growth.When a child’s growth is significantly faster than normal, there are typically two reasons; genetics (familial) or a hormonal disorder.

Genetics/ Familial Tall Stature

Familial tall stature, also known as constitutional tall stature, is the most common cause of tall stature.  More common with females whose mother was also unusually tall in childhood.

Hormonal Tall Stature 

Hormone conditions also contribute to tall stature although not as common as genetic or nutritional factors.  Hyperthyroidism and excessive growth hormone are two conditions that contribute to tall stature in children.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Children with genetic/familial tall stature are normal and typically don’t require treatment.  If symptoms listed below are evident, medical treatment may be necessary.

To diagnose tall stature and related conditions, Dr. Joshua Smith at Rocky Mountain Diabetes Center will perform a complete physical examination including medical history.  He will conduct measurements of the child’s height, weight, limbs, and trunk.  Dr. Smith may also perform blood tests to determine if the cause of tall stature is related to a hormone disorder.

Symptoms

Children who show symptoms of hormonal tall stature should contact Dr. Joshua Smith for further evaluation.  These symptoms include:

  • Early puberty
  • Excessively large body parts
  • Hyperactivity
  • Hypertension

Treatments

The treatment options for tall stature will vary depending on the root cause of the condition.  If it is determined that abnormally rapid growth is due to a hormonal problem, treatments may be necessary.  Only after a physical examination and testing will proper treatments be discussed with Dr. Smith.

Dr Josh measuring the height of a young girl.

Pediatric Endocrinology Specialist

If your child is experiencing tall stature symptoms, call Dr. Joshua Smith for an appointment or fill out the form below.

Dr. Smith is the region’s only specialist in pediatric endocrinology and is specifically trained to properly diagnose and treat tall stature.

Effective treatments, if necessary, are available but it is important to know that early intervention can prevent future problems in many cases.

Appointment Request Form – Dr. Smith

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