Benefit of postponing normal puberty for improving final height

in European Journal of Endocrinology
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  • 1 Department of Pediatrics, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands.
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Experiments of nature and clinical observations have provided indications that postponing puberty may increase final height in short children. In children with central precocious puberty, a GnRH analog (GnRHa) alone is efficacious in increasing final height, but in other conditions a combination of growth hormone (GH) and GnRHa is needed. In GH-deficient children with early onset of puberty and poor height prediction, the combination of GH and GnRHa increases final height by 1.0-1.3 s.d. In children with idiopathic short stature and persistent short stature after intrauterine growth retardation, the combination also appears to be beneficial. Potential side effects include weight gain, a negative effect on bone mineralization, and psychosocial consequences. More data on long-term safety have to be collected before the combination of GH and GnRHa in children with idiopathic short stature should be considered for clinical use outside clinical trials.


     European Society of Endocrinology

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