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Pediatr Endocrinol Rev. 2013 Dec;11(2):126-46.

Measuring growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor-I in infants: what is normal?

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Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


The role of growth hormone (GH) and insulinlike growth factor-I (IGF-I) change through early childhood. Whereas poor growth is a later presenting feature, infants with isolated GH deficiency have a normal birth weight and length, and often present with hypoglycemia. IGF-I plays an important role antenatally and post-natally in somatic and brain growth. In order to evaluate the GH/IGF-I axis in infancy, an understanding of the normal physiology is required. Measurements of GH and IGF-I in this population should be interpreted in the context of the assays used, as well as their limitations. In this review, we summarize our current understanding of normal GH and IGF-I secretion in children under 18 months of age, and describe variations in the reported assay-specific measurements.

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