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Dwarfism Cause, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

What Is Dwarfism?

Dwarfism is commonly defined as an adult height of 4 feet 10 inches (147 centimeters) or less.

Dwarfism can be divided into two categories:

  • Disproportionate dwarfism.

This is marked by some parts of the body being small, and others being average size. Disorders which cause this dwarfism are known to inhibit development of bones.

  • Proportionate dwarfism

In this category, all parts of the body are equally small. This results from overall limited growth due to certain medical conditions.

Causes Of Dwarfism:

Some dwarfism related conditions are caused due to genetics while the causes of other types are unknown.

The following conditions result in dwarfism:

Symptoms Of Dwarfism:

Different types of dwarfism are marked by different types of symptoms.

Overall, the following symptoms are exhibited:

  • In Achondroplasia:
  1. An average-size trunk
  2. Short arms and legs, with particularly short upper arms and upper legs
  3. Short fingers, often with a wide separation between the middle and ring fingers
  4. Limited mobility at the elbows
  5. A disproportionately large head, with a prominent forehead and a flattened bridge of the nose
  6. Progressive development of bowed legs
  7. Progressive development of swayed lower back
  8. An adult height around 4 feet (122 cm)


  • In spondyloepiphyseal dysplasia congenita (SEDC):
  1. A very short trunk
  2. A short neck
  3. Shortened arms and legs
  4. Average-size hands and feet
  5. Broad, rounded chest
  6. Slightly flattened cheekbones
  7. Opening in the roof of the mouth (cleft palate)
  8. Hip deformities that result in thighbones turning inward
  9. A foot that’s twisted or out of shape
  10. Instability of the neck bones
  11. Progressive hunching curvature of the upper spine
  12. Progressive development of swayed lower back
  13. Vision and hearing problems
  14. Arthritis and problems with joint movement
  15. Adult height ranging from 3 feet (91 cm) to just over 4 feet (122 cm)
  • In proportionate dwarfism:
  1. Height below the third percentile on standard pediatric growth charts
  2. Growth rate slower than expected for age
  3. Delayed or no sexual development during the teen years

Diagnosis Of Dwarfism:

The following diagnostic tests confirm the diagnosis of dwarfism:

  • Measurements
  • Appearance
  • Imaging technology
  • Genetic tests
  • Hormone tests
  • Family history

Treatment Of Dwarfism:

The following treatments are available:

  • Surgical treatments
  1. Correcting the direction in which bones are growing
  2. Stabilizing and correcting the shape of the spine
  3. Increasing the size of the opening in bones of the spine (vertebrae) to alleviate pressure on the spinal cord
  4. Placing a shunt to remove excess fluid around the brain (hydrocephalus), if it occurs
  • Limb lengthening
  • Hormone therapy

By : Natural Health News

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