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Pediatrics/Growth Curves


Hello.  My son is a healthy 9 (almost 10)year old boy and I noticed over the past couple years he is going down on his growth curve.  His doctor said they don't worry about that unless it goes down a few percent.  Here are his growth percentiles from his charts for the past 5 years:

4 years old - 94th percentile (43 inches)
5- 95th (46 inches)
6 - 96th (49.5")- I think there was a measure error here.
7-89th (50 3/4)
8-88th (53 1/4)
9- 87th (55 1/2)
9 3/4 - 86th (57)

I noticed each year he is growing almost 1/4" less than the previous.  He is tracking to only grow 2" this year.  Should I point this out to my doctor again - do you think I should be concerned?  Thank you.+


Hi, Cindy,

These are tiny percentile differences and are not at all significant.  I would agree with your doctor.  95 percentile is pretty much the same as 86 percentile.  He still is real tall and as long as he is healthy, I wouldn't worry.  All this could be due to measurement differences and is not statistically significant.

Good luck, Dr. Olson


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David Olson, MD


I would be happy to attempt to answer any questions about general pediatric topics, either medical issues or behavioral issues. This would include all the various questions one receives in a busy pediatric practice. I`m a board certified pediatrician in northern Michigan and have been in practice for over 15 years. I enjoy the teaching role I have in our practice and would enjoy the opportunity to help others with their pediatric problems.

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