Slow Head Growth

Dianne - posted on 05/14/2009 ( 4 moms have responded )

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I'm concerned about my little girls head. She has always had a smaller head in comparison to her body, but she just had her 9 month check up and her head hasn't grown AT ALL in the last 3 months! I'm FREAKING OUT! Her Dr says not to worry and they will just check her head circumference again at her 12 mos check up, but couldn't it be too late by then? Her head is 17 in...which is the 27 percentile! She's 30 in (99 percentile) and 19.7 lbs (64 percentile). I read online that a slow growing head could be a indicator of mental retardation! She seems very on track. She sits up on her own, she crawls like a maniac, she pulls herself up to a standing positions and cruises along the couch and coffee table. She says MaMaMa when she wants my attention and BooBa when she wants to nurse. She seems normal developmentally...and her Dr says that she's advanced...even more then her own 11 mos old. Still, I'm concerned. Should I seek a second opinion? Her Dr is a Family Practitioner...should I find a pediatrician to take her too? I'm really, REALLY nervous right now! I just don't want to drag my feet and regret it later.

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Sarah - posted on 05/14/2009

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No, stop worrying you'll just stress yourself out. As far as percentiles, SOMEONE has to be at every point on the growth chart. We are all made different shapes and sizes. Babies grow at different rates. If she is developing normally and meeting or exceding her developmental milestones, you have absolutely NOTHING to worry about. As far as head circumfrence, this can vary depending on who measured her last, even just 1/2" off the previous mark and your measurements can be out. There is no magical line on a person's head that says "measure here." She might have grown even 1/16" of an inch and you would never know - perfectly normal. I agree with your doctor (I'm a pediatric nurse), wait until her 1 year appointment, but try not to stress, it seems as though she is developing perfectly normal. From the picture, by the way, she looks very well preportioned.

Julia - posted on 05/14/2009

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remember measurments are guidlines! i know every one says that all babys are individual and that never seems to help as illnesses happen to individuals. it would be mal-practise for your doctor not to seek further investigations if her measurments were big flags tto mentle illness so he wouldnt be so complacent if there was something to worry about. her communication and behaviour are what all professionals look at first for mentle illness not the tape measure. your baby sounds perfectly fine and im sure it is just your instinct as a loving mum that has you in a panic. the thing that may affect your lickle girls behaviour right now is your anxiety over fears that are not even preasent in her interaction and learning. your worrying about whether you should be worring... when you look at it like that its counter productive x x

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Lisa - posted on 05/14/2009

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Any idea what family history is like regarding head size? DP has a large head and our 2 girls have taken after him. When DD2 was around 10 months I was concerned because her head looked so big on the graph. The Maternal and Child Health Nurse I saw then said she wasn't concerned because in every other way DD2 was developing well and her dad had a big head, DD2 was born with a big head LOL Well DD3 was born with a bigger head, but her growth has been pretty consistant with DD2's at the same age. I had DD3 in to the MCHN last week, a different one to who saw DD2, and she gave me a referral letter for my GP because of the difference in her head circumference compared to her height and weight (97th percentile compared to 30 and 50). My dr checked her head yesterday and said there are no abnormalities, she pretty well laughed it off as my DD's taking after their dad LOL Any with DD2 once she hit 12 months her head growth slowed down. She still has a bigger head - I buy teenage hats and she's not 4 yet, but her dad needs especially made hats/caps to fit him.

Amber - posted on 05/14/2009

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I wouldn't worry about it like you said she is on track developmentally. If there were a problem she would not be making her developmental milestones.

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