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What are some symptoms of dwarfism?

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Symptoms of dwarfism include below-average height, the presence of bowlegs or knock-knees, and lack of full motion in the joints, according to Seattle Children's Hospital. Affected children may not grow as fast as other children in their age range, and their face, trunk, arms and legs may appear different.

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Other than shortness of stature, symptoms of dwarfism vary widely across the spectrum of dwarfism disorders, states Mayo Clinic. In disproportionate dwarfism disorders, the limbs and head grow disproportionately to the body. In achondroplasia, the most common cause of dwarfism, individuals often have an average-sized trunk, short fingers, short arms and legs, mobility limitation at the elbows, and a large head with a prominent forehead. Symptoms of spondyloepiphyseal dysplasia congenita, a rarer disorder, include a short trunk, short neck, short arms and legs, vision and hearing problems, and average hands and feet.

In proportionate dwarfism, body parts grow in proportion to each other despite stunted growth, and other body systems may also be affected, according to Mayo Clinic. Growth hormone deficiency is a common cause of proportionate dwarfism, causing symptoms such as a slower than expected growth rate, delayed or lack of sexual development during adolescence, and a height that remains below the third percentile on pediatric charts.

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