Failure to thrive


Appropriate Tests


Clinical assessment, including measurement of height and weight, assessment of growth over time.

MCS urine.

Reduced nutrient availability


Dietary deficiency




Diarrhoea, including

  • Malabsorption, especially
    • Cystic fibrosis
    • Coeliac disease
    • Food intolerance

See under Diarrhoea.

Intestinal infection


Increased nutrient requirements


Infection, especially

  • Urinary tract infection
  • Respiratory infection
  • Giardiasis

If not apparent, consider possibility of occult infection: Full blood count, Blood film, White cell count differential, Erythrocyte sedimentation rate or C-Reactive protein may be helpful.

Immunodeficiency, especially

  • AIDS


Inborn errors of metabolism

Rare causes, consider if above excluded; consult pathologist

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