Precocious adrenarche in children born appropriate for gestational age: is there a difference between genders?

Ahmet Uçar, Nurçin Saka, Firdevs Baş, Rüveyde Bundak, Hülya Günöz, Feyza Darendeliler
European Journal of Pediatrics 2012, 171 (11): 1661-6
We aimed to determine whether precocious adrenarche (PA) has a different impact on screening tests for metabolic issues and pubertal timing in boys and girls born appropriate for gestational age (AGA). Puberty and initial metabolic screening results of 47 girls and 23 boys with PA born AGA followed up from our outpatient endocrinology clinic between May 2000 and October 2009 were reviewed. Initial anthropometric measurements except for body mass index standard deviation score (SDS) being higher in boys than girls (p = 0.01), bone age (BA) SDS, homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance, and plasma lipids were similar between sexes. Hormone levels except for significantly higher dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate levels in boys than girls (p = 0.0006) were also similar between the sexes. BA SDS and BA/chronological age were significantly advanced (p < 0.05) with respect to initial evaluation in 28 girls at onset of gonadarche unlike the case in 13 boys with PA (p > 0.05). In conclusions, PA in children born AGA does not herald any significant differences with respect to adverse metabolic screening results between sexes, and it appears to be a discrete process from onset of puberty in girls unlike boys, in whom it is likely a variant of normal puberty.

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