Needing Help with My 17 Month Who Is Only 19 Lbs and 25 Inches

Updated on February 27, 2007
S.M. asks from Flower Mound, TX
10 answers

Any information on babies and toddlers who have healthy birth weight like almost 8lbs and are 17 months old and still under 20 lbs and only 25 or so inches long. I do not know what to do. I have taken my son to a endo peds dr and now a peds internist but no one seems too concerned except endo dr last visit but she does not think it is a growth harmone thing or a thyroid issue. HELP

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

More Answers



answers from Dallas on

I know how you feel. I have a very small son too. Just like you I worried myself sick over his weight(or lack of) My son is now 4 years old and only 31 lbs. They did testing and found nothing wrong with him. Our pedi. had me bring him in every month for weight checks until he finally reached 20 lbs at about 20 months. My son is healthy, happy and normal in every way, except for his small size. I no longer stress about every calorie he takes in, I just let go and am thankful he is healthy.
It is also going to be funny for you when everyone is so impressed by how well your "baby" talks,walks ect...when he is 2 and 3 years old.



answers from Dallas on

Hi S. -

My daughter is just shy of 16 months and only weighs 17 lbs. We recently moved so now we have a new Pedi. Both have observed her and she is very mobile, and shows all the appropriate developmental milestones. She has been walking since 10.5 months and I was warned that at that point she will gain VERY slowly - simply b/c she burns it all off.

She was 6 lbs 14 oz when born, but since then has ALWAYS been petite with every well check up. She's shown no signs of stomach issues and until toddler ficklness, would eat EVERYTHING.

Both my old and new pedi have advised me that as long as she keeps trending up over time and is displaying all the right developmental milestones, no big deal at all.

What's funny is that my daughter is so much smaller than all the kids in her day care class, yet she has no issue holding her own, taking food when she wants it and same for toys!

I did breastfeed until about 3 weeks ago. It does seem to me that BF babies don't seem to be as "heavy" as formula fed. I wonder if this is b/c at the breast, a baby can regulate how much they take. With a bottle, they can not, so overeating (and hence more weight) can occur.

Interestingly enough, my daughter has also rarely been sick. At 1 year she got something cold-like that could not be pinpointed and she eventually got over it herself. And at 14 months, she got her 1st ear infection combined w/ bronchitis and was put on antibotics. I only mention this b/c if her being small was an indication of health, then there is no connection - rather it might be the opposite. As a contrast, my 18 month old niece weighs 24 lbs and is almost CONSTANTLY sick from November through the spring.

I suggest you look at a complete picture of your daughter and not over worry about one data point if the whole picture indicates she is doing fine.



answers from Washington DC on

My son is not 20 lbs yet and he is 17 months. I have been supplementing his meals with pediasure and that seems to be working. I am also journaling everything that he eats for our next trip to the pediatrician. According to our Dr the next step would be to a nutritionist. We have had blood drawn and all the tests have come back normal. I used to worry myself crazy but now I just think that he is a late bloomer. Has your soon been tested? You and your youngest will be in my prayers. Please keep us posted.




answers from Dallas on

Gosh, if you've got 6 others, you are obviously aware that every child is different, etc., etc. Is anyone in your family small? My daughter was just 16 lbs at her 1 year well-baby visit, but most of the women in my family are small too. I don't remember her height at one, but she'll be 4 in May and just hit 36 inches. Seems like your son's height and weight are proportionate, which is probably why they aren't acting concerned.
Is his size the only thing that concerns you? are there developmental delays as well? "Failure to thrive"? Did the doctor actually do a blood test for growth hormone and thyroid levels? If not, I would push for that as well as testing a stool sample (can give clues to digestive disorders that cause poor weight gain, like Celiac disorder.)
Cystic Fibrosis also causes growth and weight gain problems. An endocrinologist should have that on his/her radar.
If you're concerned about "dwarfism" here is some information:
It's a genetic condition (so he would need to get genetic testing) and can occur in children of normal sized parents. However, short stature isn't the only characteristic of it.

All that aside, you might need to really push your doctors on this. All too often we mothers are brushed off as being too worried about things....and all too often our instincts will ring true and prove the medical community wrong. And, honestly, the fact that you have this concern and it's your 7th child should clue the docs in that you're not just a worry-wart. Doctors are trained to start with the path of least resistance and not jump to extravagant conclusions unless the facts lead them there, so it may take some effort to get someone to investigate further. If you're worried and you can afford the right tests, I'd get them done.

Good luck!
Keep us posted!



answers from Dallas on

I am feeling you!!! My daughter just turned 3 in January. She weighs 25lbs and is about 29 inches long. She is still in 18 month clothes. When she was born she weighed 8 lbs 2 oz. When she was younger we took her to a internist and they said that she was just going to small. Let me tell you that I was small as a child also. Pretty much matching my daughter in weight vs age.

He may just be small. Is there anyone in your family that is small. My mom is only 90lbs and 5'. Good luck and don't let it bother you too much. I know easier said then done.

Oh and with the how well your "baby" talks comment. She was using the bathroom at daycare and another parent went to get their child. The other parent ran up to the front and told them that they had a 1 y/o using the bathroom. Yeap it was my daughter!!!



answers from Dallas on

My daughter is 16 months old and 18 lbs but is 27 1/2 inches long.

Let me tell you a little history....when she was 7 months old she had stomach surgery for sever reflux and weighed 18.5 lbs and was 27.5 inches long. She stayed that weight and height until she was 13-14 months old and then lost over a pound and just gained it back within the last 30-45 days after we found out she was allergic to gluten/wheat (not celiacs, just a allergy is what the doc says...but my belief is diffrent). We see the endo next week for the 1st time. She has had a blood test to check for thyroid and growth hormones and everything is normal, the only thing abnormal was her Orgainic Acid count (stool count) and we are being refered to a Metobolic Genetic Specilist for that.

Now, my questions: Has there been a stop in growth for a long peorid of time? Is he slowly gaining and growing in height or just not anything at all? What test have been done (Blood, Stool, Sweat, etc....)? Are you working with a nutricinst to check on calorie intake and food intake? Has he become more active latley?

Good Luck and I know what you are going through. After 8 months of no growth, it finally clicked with the doctors to check into it a little futher....




answers from Dallas on

Hi S.,
From one mom of a "little" one to another, I hope I can help ease your mind. :)

My middle daughter went through just what you're describing. (My husband and I went through exactly what your emotions are going through, too!!! No fun at ALL!) We had all the tests, lost tons of hours of sleep, and a definitive cause never surfaced. Her two sisters, one older and one younger, always maintained a healthy weight. Also, to our knowledge, neither my husband nor I have slow-growers in our immediate family. So our middle daughter's slow growth was such a source of stress because it seemed to come out of nowhere! When our youngest daughter came along, I was so afraid she was going to outgrow her big sis! But, thankfully, that hasn't happened and our slow-grower did pick up the pace and eventually began to grow at a more reasonable rate. She's still at the bottom of the statistical charts for her age, but we've just realized this is normal for her and not something to be worried about.

So perhaps this is the case with your little one, too! If he seems healthy and eats decently (what toddler does, right?...) then this is more than likely just the rate his little body feels is normal for him. And if this is the conclusion your docs are drawing, you can probably just put your mind at ease in that..not that that's easy, believe me, I know... :)

I hope this helps!
God bless!



answers from Auburn on

I have twin boys both born in the 5+ pound range. At 20 months old, one is about 28 lbs and won is barely over 21 lbs and about 3 inches shorter than his brother. He is only in the 5-10% for babies his age. I really don't worry about it too much (even though he does look so skinny). I figure that's just how God made him, he seems very healthy in every other way. Many people have shared with me that their kids were small when little but as they got older, they grew and grew and grew. Even if my little guy is a little on the short side as a grown man, he'll have the temperment to dare any 6 footer to mess with him! He plays havoc on his bigger twin. :-)



answers from Dallas on

My daughter is also small for her age. She just turned 2 and is about 24 pounds. She weighed just at 20 pounds at eighteen months and surprised everyone by gaining 4 pounds in the last six months. I also have a son that is 3 1/2 and weighs in at 31 lbs. My husband is tall and thin and I am short and average weight. My pediatricians has never been worried because both children have always been small. She said the only time to really worry is if they suddenly drop in the percentile range. My daughter has always been between the 5-10% and my son usually ranges in the 20's. She thinks they have settled into their genetic potential and as long as they continue to gain weight and show no other signs of developmental delay that everything will be fine.
I know it is hard but please do not stress over this. We have never been concerned and as long as the kids eat a decent diet most of the time we are happy. The only thing we do is make sure that the calories they do consume are healthy ones. No junk food or candy. We also have continued to keep both kids on whole milk to maximize the calories.



answers from Dallas on

My son is also very thin (1%), but because his height is in the normal range (25%), the doctor's aren't as concerned. But these are some things we had tested:

endocrinologist tested at 18 months - found nothing
celiac disease test - came back fine
stool sample to test for fat content to see if maybe his body wasn't absorbing the fat - it was fine
on prevacid for silent reflux - no change
tested for food and environmental allergies - doesnt' have any

We have one more appointment with a gastroenterologist but I'm guessing things are fine and he's just skinny.
If your son's weight is not due to a medical issue, this is a great high fat/calorie drink I make for my son

1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 packet carnation vanilla instant breakfast
2 tbs whipping cream
1 tbs evaporated milk
1-2 tbs nestle quick strawberry or chocolate syrup

It tastes delicious and has close to 400 calories and 11+ grams of fat. He drinks one after his nap so that it doesn't interfere too much with the other meals of the day.

It sounds like your pediatrician isn't very concerned, but that you are. Take him to another ped for a second opinion. We had to switch doctor's because ours decided to stay home with her kids. It was the new doctor that suggested the stool sample adn the prevacid. Even though neither were an issue for my son, a different pair of eyes sees different things.

Oh, we know of a baby who just turned one and is 16 pounds and short. Very small little girl. Well, after doing a ton of tests, they ended up putting her on something to test for silent reflux. Something she had to wear in her throat for one day. It turns out that they said she had pretty bad silent reflux and after putting her on medication, she gained 1 1/2 pounds in a month!! Which is a record for her.

Good luck.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches