Clinical Practice and
Referral Guidelines

Short Stature

Children who have growth failure over a significant time period develop short stature. The objective in developing this guideline was to assist the pediatrician in the evaluation of short stature and to determine when a referral to a pediatric endocrinologist is warranted.

This guideline includes the following:

  1. Key points of recording history, particularly familial history, as well as dietary and exercise history;
  2. Physical exam recommendations, which include assessing for chronic disease that would delay growth and/or dysmorphology that would be suggestive of a chromosomal abnormality;
  3. Laboratory evaluation; and
  4. Indications for a referral to a pediatric endocrinologist.

If you are a physician and would like more information on the Clinical Practice and Referral Guideline for Short Stature, please contact us at

If you are a parent and concerned that your child may have growth issues, please consult with your child’s pediatrician or primary care physician.

This guideline was developed in collaboration with pediatric endocrinologists from Georgia Pediatric Subspecialists and Emory-Children’s Center. The recommendations in the guideline do not indicate an exclusive course of treatment. The intent is to build a consensus of care in the pediatric community and provide a framework for clinical decision-making. Last revised 4/2011. 

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