CHOP’s Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes
Childhood is full of milestones in development and growth, often recorded by pencil lines marking a child’s height on a wall. But sometimes those milestones are disrupted. Hundreds of children visit CHOP every year dealing with endocrine disorders that impede their ability to grow and develop. The experts at CHOP’s Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes are always ready with the latest treatments and, potentially, a cure.
The division includes programs for conditions related to the thyroid, adrenal gland, pituitary gland, bone health, blood sugar and more. It’s one of the largest centers of its kind in the nation and has made game-changing breakthroughs, like genetic discoveries for the life-threatening disease hyperinsulinism, leading to refined diagnosis.
A focus on families’ needs
Many endocrine disorders are life-long conditions, from well-known ones like diabetes to rare diseases like Turner syndrome. When a child or teen must add something like diabetes management to the mix of school, activities, meals and family life, it can be overwhelming. CHOP has numerous programs and services to help guide families, such as:
- Pediatric psychologists who help kids cope with chronic health conditions.
- Community health workers who visit families where they live to help them navigate appointments, sources of healthy food and more.
- Certified diabetes educators who teach families how to integrate diabetes care into daily life.
For every child with an endocrine condition, the CHOP team is driven to find the best ways to restore health. With your support, we will.
Our Inspiring Patients
When Eliana was born, her mother, Sally, knew to be on the alert for signs of X-linked hypophosphatemia, a rare genetic disorder that can affect bone development and strength. That’s because Sally has the condition herself. She also knew where to turn for diagnosis and treatment: CHOP’s Center for Bone Health, where Sally was also treated. The four-hour drive from their home was well worth the extra effort for the team’s special expertise.
Three-year-old Evelyn has congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH), a rare, lifelong condition that occurs when the adrenal glands do not produce a substance that regulates energy, blood pressure and blood sugar. At CHOP, children with CAH are treated in the Adrenal and Puberty Center, where families are taught how to recognize when their children need immediate doses of medication. The center follows 120 patients with CAH, more than any other hospital in the region.
Finding out that their 8-year-old daughter had type 1 diabetes was a shock, but with help from CHOP’s Diabetes Center, Cynthia and Andre learned how to successfully manage Morgan’s diabetes. A CHOP social worker also armed them with resources to change the policy at Morgan’s school and get a nurse assigned there full time. Now 10, Morgan is very active and loves to cook recipes from a diabetes cookbook.
Nico was diagnosed with glucokinase hyperinsulinism (GCK HI) at CHOP after nine months of unsuccessful treatment elsewhere. At the Congenital Hyperinsulinism Center, Nico was put on medications and a strict diet to control his blood sugar, but they didn’t work. Then he joined a clinical trial to receive an investigational therapy continuously through a pump. “It made such a huge difference in his life,” his mother, Jury, says.
Zach was diagnosed with papillary thyroid cancer in 2018, at just 11 years old, and his thyroid had been removed at a local California hospital. When it was time for Zach to receive radioactive iodine treatment to destroy any remaining cancer cells, the family came to CHOP’s Pediatric Thyroid Center. How much did CHOP mean to them? When a follow-up appointment fell smack in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, they made the 7,000-mile drive so Zach could be seen in person.
About Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Every day, teams at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia make breakthroughs that transform children’s lives. Since our founding in 1855 as the nation’s first children’s hospital, we have made extraordinary discoveries, trained generations of leaders, and advocated for children everywhere. Our pediatric research program, one of the largest in the country, has set a new standard for scientific innovation around the world. As a nonprofit charitable organization, we rely on the generous support of donors who are inspired by our work — and our mission.
Creating More Breakthroughs
Since 2017, The Runway has made a profound impact on programs across the hospital. Together, we can harness creativity to reach ambitious goals, so children everywhere can grow, thrive and lead healthy, happy lives.