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A method of screening for growth hormone deficiency using anthropometrics

, : A method of screening for growth hormone deficiency using anthropometrics. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 34(2): 281-288

Among children less than 3rd percentile in height, less than 1% are deficient in endogenous growth hormone, while 80% have no recognizable organic cause for short stature, and are termed normal variants. This study investigated whether anthropometric evaluation can distinguish growth hormone-deficient from normal variant children. Height, weight, midarm circumference and 10 skinfold thicknesses were measured in 24 growth hormone-deficient and 26 normal variant children; indices of linear growth, adiposity, and lean body mass were derived from these. All these variables were analyzed statistically by discriminant analysis. This led to a screening formula, here called a "Z-function," based only on height and five skinfolds (abdomen, back, chest, knee, and calf). The Z-function classified correctly all but two growth hormone-deficients and two normal variants. Because of the small and possibly inhomogeneous sample, the particular formula developed here is not recommended for general use, but these preliminary findings show that a simple anthropometric screening test is indeed feasible, and could be useful in pediatric practice.


PMID: 7211729

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