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Review: 'Normal at Any Cost: Tall Girls, Short Boys, and the Medical Industry's Quest to Manipulate Height,' by Susan Cohen and Christine Cosgrove

What's it about? Normal at Any Cost: Tall Girls, Short Boys, and the Medical Industry's Quest to Manipulate Height is a critical look at medical attempts to control height, from stunting girls' growth to costly injections of human growth hormone to make kids grow taller.

Who's it for? Parents with children who are tracking to be much taller or shorter than average height, or adults who were treated as children for their height.

Who knew? In the 1950s and 1960s, being tall for females was considered such a handicap, treatments like pumping girls full of estrogen were used. Although they've proved unsafe, some doctors will still prescribe if parents press enough.

Worth the read? Yes, for parents considering a medical intervention to make short children grow. Normal at Any Cost outlines the risks and possible side effects — which might not be height.

Jen Miller, Times correspondent

Normal at Any Cost

Susan Cohen and Christine Cosgrove

Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin, $26.95

Review: 'Normal at Any Cost: Tall Girls, Short Boys, and the Medical Industry's Quest to Manipulate Height,' by Susan Cohen and Christine Cosgrove 03/06/09 [Last modified: Thursday, March 12, 2009 1:44pm]
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