We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Is Short Stature?

M.C. Huguelet
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Short stature is a general term used to describe a physical height that is significantly below that of others of the same gender and age as the affected individual. It can affect both children and adults, and may have no known cause or may be caused by a range of diseases or disorders. In some cases, it may be treatable or even self-correcting, while in other cases, it is permanent. Showing sensitivity toward those of short stature, particularly children, can be critical to the maintenance of self-esteem.

To identify short stature in a patient, a physician compares the patient’s height to the average height of other individuals of the same gender and age. For children and adolescents, this comparison is usually made using a growth chart. According to criteria established by the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, individuals whose height falls within approximately the lowest two percentile for their peer group are considered to be of short stature.

Both children and adults can have a stature that is short. In some cases, extreme shortness has no identifiable cause. Other instances of short stature are caused by conditions such as genetic defects, growth hormone deficiencies, malnutrition, skeletal disorders, and diseases of the heart or kidneys.

Further, a child’s height is not necessarily a predictor of what kind of stature he will have as an adult. Children of average stature may experience a slowing of growth which causes them to have a short stature as adults. Conversely, individuals who had a stature that was considered short as children may reach an average height by adulthood due to treatment of the underlying cause of their shortness. When shortness of stature is caused by permanent conditions like certain genetic mutations and skeletal disorders, however, it is likely to persist for the length of the affected individual’s life.

In many societies, extreme shortness is regarded as a sign of difference or even maligned as a kind of deficiency. Consequently, individuals with short stature, particularly children, may be at risk for developing low self-esteem. Those who have a child with short stature in their lives can help foster self-confidence by refraining from treating him differently than his peers, by avoiding making insensitive jokes or teasing him about his height, and by encouraging him in areas where he excels.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
M.C. Huguelet
By M.C. Huguelet
Cate Huguelet, a Chicago-based freelance writer with a passion for storytelling, crafts engaging content for a wide range of publications, including WiseGeek. With degrees in Writing and English, she brings a unique perspective and a commitment to clean, precise copy that resonates with readers. Her ability to understand and connect with audiences makes her a valuable asset to any content creation team.
Discussion Comments
M.C. Huguelet
M.C. Huguelet
Cate Huguelet, a Chicago-based freelance writer with a passion for storytelling, crafts engaging content for a wide...
Learn more
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.