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IGFD/ IGF1 Deficiency

A child’s growth is one of the best indications of good health.  Physicians frequently track a child’s growth to see that he or she is developing with a normal growth pattern.  The normal growth curve falls between the 3rd and the 97th percentile of all children.  However, children who are shorter than 97.5 percent of their peers of the same age and sex can be described as having short stature.

There are many reasons that can lead to a child having short stature, including poor nutrition, family history and constitutional growth delay, where growth is experienced later than his or her peers.  Underlying medical conditions such as chromosomal defects, kidney, lung, heart or gastrointestinal disease can also cause growth failure. These short stature children may also have low levels of hormones that are associated with normal growth.  For example, having low levels of pituitary growth hormone causes growth failure.  This hormonal deficiency in growth hormone can lead to low levels of insulin-like growth factor-1, or IGF-1, a hormone made primarily in the liver that determines much of the growth-promoting effects of growth hormone.

boy and bearSome children, however, experience poor growth despite possessing normal or even higher amounts of growth hormone. Because the underlying cause of this short stature is not understood, such children are sometimes given a diagnosis of idiopathic short stature or ISS.  However, some ISS children have been found to have low levels of IGF-1 despite having normal to high growth hormone.  These children are now described as having a newly identified endocrine condition called Primary Insulin-like Growth Factor Deficiency, or Primary IGFD, a term that describes lower levels of IGF-1, that directly explains the poor growth.

Diagnosis of IGF1 Deficiency 

MAGIC is made up of parents of affected children and some groups for affected adults. If you would like to talk with other parents-


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