Pediatric Endocrinology

Whether your child was born with an endocrine disorder or has developed a hormone-related problem, the board-certified pediatric endocrinologists at Children's Regional Hospital provide expert diagnosis and treatment.

Infants, children, and adolescents with diabetes, short stature, thyroid dysfunctions and other endocrine abnormalities receive care from our staff of physicians, a nurse specialist, a nutritionist, and a social worker.

What is a Pediatric Endocrinologist?

Endocrinology is the scientific study and treatment of endocrine glands, which are responsible for distributing hormones into the bloodstream. Abnormalities with endocrine glands will result in hormone-related disorders such as diabetes, thyroid dysfunction and an early or late onset of puberty.

The pediatric endocrinologists at Cooper are certified practitioners in pediatric care, having completed pediatric residencies and fellowship training with a specialization in endocrinology. Our experts will meet with each patient and guide them through the journey of diagnosis, treatment and long-term management. 

Why Choose Us? 

At Cooper, we are committed to ensuring your child receives the most advanced treatments and highest quality pediatric care. Our experts and support staff take a multidisciplinary team approach to your child’s care, using the most advanced diagnostic techniques and treatment approaches designed to meet your child’s needs.

Pediatric Endocrine Disorders

We offer comprehensive evaluation and treatment of endocrine-related disorders such as:

  • Diabetes
  • Growth disorders (including growth hormone deficiency)
  • Thyroid diseases (congenital or acquired)
  • Disorders of puberty (early or delayed)
  • Ambiguous genitalia
  • Adrenal diseases
  • Pituitary diseases
  • Disorders of calcium and phosphorus metabolism
  • Turner Syndrome

The treatment for each condition will vary greatly upon a final diagnosis, and each specialist at Cooper is fully prepared to adjust to unique treatment plans for each patient’s condition.

Specialty Pediatric Endocrinology Services

The specialists at Cooper will work directly with the patient to plan out the specific treatment plan for their unique endocrine condition. The services available to patients include comprehensive diagnosis and the development of a treatment plan that best fits their unique condition.

Treating Pediatric Diabetes

There is currently no cure for diabetes, but the symptoms can be managed to the point that a person can lead a perfectly normal life. After receiving a detailed diagnosis, each patient will be able to develop their own treatment plan along with their doctor. Cooper hosts a comprehensive inpatient and outpatient diabetes program that will guide each patient through the treatment and long-term management of their condition.

The goal of managing diabetes is to regularly monitor blood sugar, which comes down to taking regular doses of insulin and eating a healthy diet that will stabilize blood sugar. Your treatment team will help establish the steps you need to take to manage your conditions, including setting you up with a registered dietitian that will organize a diet plan that will best regulate blood pressure. You will also be prescribed a specific type of insulin, which can include rapid-acting, short-acting, intermediate-acting and long-acting. Each type has unique characteristics and your endocrinologist will determine the best treatment plan for you.

Treating Pediatric Thyroid Diseases

There are many variations of thyroid disease, all relating to disorders in the proper distribution of thyroid hormones to the body. The most common disorder is hypothyroidism, where there is a deficit in thyroid hormones. Other variations include the opposite scenario, hyperthyroidism, as well as thyroid nodules and thyroid cancer.

For hypothyroidism, the treatment plan is focused on replenishing the body with missing thyroid hormones. This most commonly includes replacing thyroxine (T4) although there also may be a need to replenish liothyronine (T3). This will come in pill prescription form, and the unique hormone selection and dosage will vary by patient depending on their diagnosis. Children can be diagnosed with hypothyroidism at any age, even as newborns. A congenital hypothyroid screening test is conducted shortly after the day of birth, usually at least three days after. If the screening confirms a positive hypothyroid diagnosis, then Cooper specialists will begin more thorough tests after the first week to develop a treatment plan as soon as possible.

For hyperthyroidism, the treatment plan is generally focused on reducing the amount of hormone production in the body. The treatment method will vary from anti-thyroid medication to radioiodine therapy, all with the same objective of preventing the thyroid gland from over-producing thyroid hormones. In more extreme cases, a surgery known as thyroidectomy will remove a portion of your thyroid gland, following up the surgery with regular hormone supplements that redistribute the same thyroid hormones that are now not being produced. Surgery is done very rarely in unique scenarios, or as an option for those who do not want to pursue any of the medication or therapy approaches.

Additional specialized services available to patients include:

  • Complete growth evaluation and treatment
  • Evaluation and treatment of girls with Turner syndrome
  • Performance of specialized endocrine stimulation tests of the adrenal and pituitary glands

The Importance of Communication

We believe that good communication equals good care for your child. We always remain in contact with your family, the referring physician, and anyone else involved in your child's care. Upon a confirmed diagnosis, the Cooper specialist will speak with the family as well as any other associated physicians to develop the best treatment plan for all parties. Throughout treatment and long-term management, the team at Cooper will be available and attentive to ensure that your child progresses to a point where they can lead a normal life free of symptoms.

Contact Us

To make an appointment with a pediatric endocrinologist, please call 800.8.COOPER (800.826.6737).