Optimizing Linear Growth Measurement in Children.
NLM Title Abbreviation
J Pediatr Health Care
Journal of pediatric health care : official publication of National Association of Pediatric Nurse Associates & Practitioners
DOI of Published Version
A child's pattern of linear growth is one of the most sensitive indicators of health and well-being. However, many health care personnel use casual techniques and faulty instruments to measure children's growth and keep imprecise growth charts, making interpretation of growth patterns problematic. This situation can delay diagnosis and treatment of children with growth disorders and other conditions that affect growth. It can also lead to undue anxiety and unnecessary evaluation of children who are actually growing well. A clinical practice guideline was developed to optimize the accuracy and reliability of linear growth measurement. This article presents strategies to implement the guideline and thereby increase awareness of the importance of standardized growth measurement techniques and instruments, facilitate staff training and competency, and encourage standardized record keeping. These strategies will give providers more confidence in their interpretation of children's growth patterns and allow them to recognize potential problems, possibly before other symptoms appear.