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Q. Is it true that hypothyroidism has stunted my growth?

Answered by
Dr. Sruti Chandrasekaran
and medically reviewed by Dr. Preetha J
This is a premium question & answer published on Sep 28, 2020

Hello doctor,

I am 21 years old, and I have beta-thalassemia minor and hypothyroidism. Is it possible that hypothyroidism could have stunted my height at the age of 16 when I diagnosed with it? My question is whether my growth plates have fused? (Here are pictures of the left elbow and left knee). If they have fused, does that mean 100 percent certainty that growth will not occur in bones anymore? What about spinal discs-bones? I wanted to test myself for HGH deficiency. If I have HGH deficiency, is it possible that injections will help me grow if my plates fused at 21? Is it true that even though plates are fused, backbones are still growing, and height can increase by 2 inches?

Thanks and regards.

Dr. Sruti Chandrasekaran

Diabetology Endocrinology


Welcome to

I want to get some more information from you before answering this question.

1. How tall are you now?

2. How tall are your parents and siblings?

3. How controlled is your thyroid?

4. Is your TSH (Thyroid-stimulating hormone) normal in your current dose?

Kindly get back to me.


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Thank you, doctor.

My height is 171 to 172 cm (I appear young for my age 21). Parents' height: father-173 and mother-167. TSH level is 2.0, and we aim to decrease it at 1.0 (now I take 75 mg Levothyroxine). Now I have these symptoms of hypothyroidism: I gained weight (fat around the waist), was sweating in the armpits, feel fatigued, while walking in the stairs or when doing something, I breathe heavily, I have been socially isolated from the past year, and do not get in touch a lot with people. I do not know why. The strange thing is that I have big cold and heat intolerance, for example, to water, and I always feel hot. When I was getting treated for hypothyroidism years ago, the somatostatin level is also were below the minimum value. It happened when I was around 17 years old. I also have a beta-thalassemia minor (anemia). I now think of going to test myself for HGH deficiency to see, but I do not how to tell the doctor to let me have this kind of test because one has to have definite reasons for it. And I have some of the symptoms. What do you think? I would like to see your opinion and suggestions.


Dr. Sruti Chandrasekaran

Diabetology Endocrinology


Welcome back to

I asked these questions because we calculate the mid parental height based on the father's and mother's height and develop something called your target height. You are within your target height. How heavy are you? Any comments on BMI would be helpful. TSH is supernormal, and that is awesome.

Regarding your earlier query and reviewing your bone x-ray, I am unsure if hormonal therapy would add more to your height. We do not consider that to be a significant criterion regarding spinal bone growth, which is often debated. In my practice, I usually get a carpal bone x-ray (wrist x-ray), and if the bones are not fused, we could consider the possibility of hormonal replacement.

Did you do a carpal bone x-ray? I did not see them?

Regarding your other question: Could hypothyroidism be a cause for your stunted growth? It would be less likely because if hypothyroidism remains untreated, one will not achieve the target height.

I hope I answered your questions.

Kindly discuss with your endocrinologist also regarding your concern.


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