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Some survivors of childhood cancer may develop growth problems as a result of their cancer treatments.
Growth problems can happen because certain glands in the endocrine system do not produce enough hormones.
In children, the most obvious sign of deficiency is the slowing of growth or height.
Other signs include:
Adults with growth and hormone deficiency may experience:
Ask your oncologist about your risks of developing late effects.
Inform your primary health care provider about your risks. Share a copy of your Survivorship Care Plan, which includes a treatment summary. The summary includes details about you cancer treatment and information about health problems that may occur because of treatment.
Have a yearly physical examination. The exam should include checking:
Patients at risk for growth hormone deficiency should have this screening every six months until growth is completed.
If patients have signs and symptoms of poor growth, the health care provider may:
Treatment usually involves taking a synthetic growth hormone over several years. It is given by injection. The endocrinologist can provide information about how much growth is possible.
Reviewed: November 2019