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Low BMI in a child


lovinglife
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Hi Hive!  

 

I'm just wondering if I am paranoid, or if I should have the Dr. look into things further.   I have a tiny 5 year old.  She has been skinny for years, is on the slightly taller side for her age, and is just a light little thing.  My dh took her to her well child yesterday and her BMI was 12.9, the same as last year.  In the last year she has only gained 1 inch and 1.5 pounds.  But, she did gain.  Should I request a follow up to look into possible issues.  I have a couple other skinny children, a stout 1 year old, and a couple average builds.  Dh is tall and skinny and I am average height and NOT skinny  ;) (overweight).  I'm a little concerned about her, she has also been complaining of sore legs for some time and fatigues easily but doesn't seem otherwise unhealthy.

 

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I would ask the doctor to check it out, just to be on the safe side.  You could perhaps talk to the doctor on the phone in advance, or write a note, so that you don't have to talk about it in front of the child.

 

We had Calvin checked out when he was younger because of his low BMI.  He doesn't normally make it onto the bottom of the BMI chart - he's currently at the 0th percentile.  The doctor ran some blood tests and nothing came up.  He's grown well and is happy and healthy.

 

L

 

 

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With the sore legs and fatiguing I would mention it to the doctor and have them do some follow up.  If she was just tiny but otherwise healthy and active I wouldnt' worry but given her complaints I think a follow up would be in order.

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I'd dig further into the physical complaints.

 

I have/had 2 low BMI kids, 2 brick houses, and 1 on the smallish side but not shockingly so.  We have very diverse genes here, so I try not to get uptight about it.  But I would take physical complaints seriously.

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Do any of these mito disorder symptoms ring any bells? http://www.umdf.org/site/pp.aspx?c=8qKOJ0MvF7LUG&b=7934631

 

If so, would ask your pediatrician to run a basic mito screen and if there are any "red flags", to refer your child to a pediatric neurologist. http://www.umdf.org/site/pp.aspx?c=8qKOJ0MvF7LUG&b=7934633

 

My little one was off-the-charts small until we took her off gluten. She has some "red flags" for mito and was actually on a wait list for the pediatric neurometabolic clinic at one of the hospitals in the area until we had to switch health insurance last year. Our new insurance is a HMO and it is extremely difficult to get approval for mito testing. DD's symptoms are not severe enough for the HMO to make the referral.

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4-6 is common for growing pains. I, personally don't give any weight to BMI in children, especially young ones. What is her weight? My 6 yo was at the same weight for over a year, but in the last couple of months or so he's started to gain. I wasn't worried as he eats nonstop and runs nonstop. My ped wasn't worried when he went from 9 pounds to off the charts at a year, because he fell consistently off the chart. She only worrys if the line doesn't trend consistently.

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I have 2 with low BMI.  One is in the 75th  for height, 15th for weight, & other is just tiny.  I have 3 bricks with the opposite problem...thankfully, my pediatricians have always looked at my kids as more than #s.  One of my bricks used to tire more easily and complained of sore legs...I did bring it up with the doctor at a routine visit, and she did a bit more thorough exam and a blood draw.  She was normal.  Of course that same child has fallen from the 55th percentile to the 15th over the past three years, but we suspect that it is just that late bloomer gene (she's still growing at an avg 2" a year...no spurt.)  Things should start picking up for her over the next 2 years,  though.  (Oldest went through something similar, but went from 80th to 45th...he is now climbing the charts again)

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Interesting comments!  She turned five last month and weighs 32 pounds.  Her 20 month old brother has very nearly caught up to her  :tongue_smilie:  But he is a tank.  I was a bit concerned that there might be things not picked up because we moved last year and haven't transferred her medical records yet.  So, I'm requesting the medical records and I went ahead and scheduled a follow up for next week (she needs kindergarten shots anyway).  It's probably nothing, but it's better to check and know she is just tiny and tired ( :  than to wonder if something more serious may be going on.  Thanks for all of the input!  

 

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The BMI sounds just like my son last year.  His BMI was so low and PS sent a letter home (beginning of K, so he was just 5).  I was annoyed at the letter in particular, but evidently it was a state thing.  Anyway, we brought it up to the ped and they weren't at all concerned because this was his normal.  There was not change drastically in his habits, so the weight was "normal" for him.  He was around 35lbs then.  Our 3 year old neighbor girl weighs the same as him even now! :)  Now, he didn't have the leg pains, etc. and I would want to check that out.  But i wouldn't be worried about just the BMI.

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She sounds like my daughter.  I just looked up her weight when she was 5 1/2, and she was 32 pounds.  She was very tiny all along, and never had any baby fat rolls.  (At age one, she was 15 pounds, and 6 pounds at birth.)

 

She seemed a little uncoordinated, seemed weak at times, but as it turns out, it was nothing at all.  She was just very petite.

 

My mother was that way, and I'm quite slim.  So there is definitely genetics playing in there.  But some of my other children are so different!  So that's part of what made me nervous, at the time.  Her next oldest sister (1.5 years) was probably twice her weight and very tall for her age!

 

One thing doctors always commented on was that her her hair looked so healthy.  Apparently that's a good sign that her body is absorbing the nutrients it needs.

 

I wouldn't make too big a deal of it, because it sounds like it runs in your family a bit.

 

The doctors made a HUGE deal of it with mine, starting at age 1.5.  She really went through a lot of rigmarole (I had to look up how to spell that!), and as it turns out, it was nothing at all.  Now she is 19, 5'5" and weighs 100 pounds.  :)  She is very healthy!

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