Slow Height/Weight Gain

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-01-2007
Slow Height/Weight Gain
Thu, 10-14-2010 - 2:58pm

So, my 9.5 month old has only gained less than a pound over 3 months and only 3/4 of an inch in height.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-21-2009
Thu, 10-14-2010 - 7:11pm

It's entirely possible this is just the way your kids are supposed to grow. My dearest friend has 4 daughters who were all tiny and slow to grow to the degree that the doctor always wanted to send them for testing which she did with daughter #2 (number one was a preemie so I think they just chalked it up to her prematurity). Everything tested as fine and when they recommended it with #3 and #4 mom protested and asked them to check her other kids growth charts to see that it was similar. They are all grown women now and on the petitie size.

However, on the other hand the growth is pretty slow and it would not probably be a bad idea to reassure you by having some testing done as long as you don't feel it's too invasive.

One idea I've suggested to other moms in this situation is to get a rental scale. The Medela baby weigh is accurate enough to be used for pre and post bf weights to see how much the baby is drinking. If you do this, I'd recommend doing pre and post bf weights for ALL feedings for a 24 to 48 hour period (don't make yourself crazy by doing it more days and definitely if you are going to do it commit to every feeding). In this way you can measure how much breast milk she drinks and calculate the calorie intake. Breast milk averages about 20-22 calories per ounce. You can then also calculate the calories from the solids and then talk to a dietician about it. Preferably a dietician who is expert with babies. If the dietician tells you the amount of calories is the right

Kathy Kuhn IBCLC ivillage lactation consultant Grammy to Brennan, Elias, Elianna, Tahlia, Makenna, Maura, Silas, and Charlotte

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-01-2007
Thu, 10-14-2010 - 7:45pm
Thanks for the info, I will definitely think about those options. I do have one question.

I've always been curious about the solids/BM issue. If I feed her 4 oz of solids at a meal, does that mean I'm displacing 4oz of BM she would otherwise drink?

She definitely will take more solids if I offer. She's never once stopped eating solids or turned anything away. I'm actually really curious how much she would eat if I waited until she stopped eating!

Interestingly, I checked my son's stats and he grew only 1 pound between 9 and 12 months (which is when he started becoming mobile). But, he grew almost 3 inches. She started crawling between 6 and 9 months, and only put on a pound during that time. But, the height wasn't as much.

I think I'm going to at least go ahead with a blood draw and discuss with the doctor the other options. I don't think I'm even going to wait until our weight check. This is really "weighing" (ha ha) on me and I don't think I can handle worrying about it for another week or two. I would be really interested to try to process with the scale, but I don't trust myself that I could handle all the weights, especially given the fact she eats several times overnight. But, we mama's do what we have to do, so if it comes down to it I'll do it!
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-01-2007
Fri, 10-15-2010 - 7:50pm
Well, we unfortunately ended up back in the doctor's office today for a sick visit for my son. But, the nurse practitioner did answer some of my questions.

She said they generally don't want to do any testing unless there's been at least one month of focused effort on increasing calorie intake. The testing is apparently pretty extensive and expensive, so it is likely the insurance company won't cover it unless we can show we attempted other things first.

So, that's what I'll be doing. I am pumping after feedings and getting anywhere from a few drops to an ounce. I feel like that is a good sign that my supply is where it should be. However, I'm going to keep it up and use the pumped milk to mix into her food.

I let her eat her full three meals of solids today. She's a monster. For breakfast she ate half of a piece of bacon, three buttered pancakes (special pancakes that have added nutrients), and 6 ounces of steel cut oats and butternut squash mix. She ate just as much for lunch and then 5 ounces of coconut milk yogurt for dinner. I am adding in flax seed and wheat germ where I can as well as butter and oil and will continue to make sure she gets a high calorie/fat diet. It's not that hard because I already do that with my son.

So, we'll see what happens. I will probably attempt a weight check weekly at our lactation center just to chart the progress.