Developmental processes in early adolescence. Relations among chronologic age, pubertal stage, height, weight, and serum levels of gonadotropins, sex steroids, and adrenal androgens

Editha D. Nottelmann, Elizabeth J. Susman, Lorah D. Dorn, Gale Inoff-Germain, D. Lynn Loriaux, Gordon B. Cutler, George P. Chrousos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

70 Scopus citations

Abstract

Cross-sectional data are presented on 108 young adolescents (56 boys, 52 girls), ages 9 to 14 years. The measures were: for all subjects, pubertal stage (Tanner criteria for genital/breast and pubic hair stage); height and weight; serum hormone concentrations for gonadotropins (luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone), sex steroids (testosterone, estradiol, and the computed testosterone to estradiol ratio), adrenal androgens (dehydroepiandrosterone, dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, and androstenedione), and testosterone-estradiol binding globulin. In addition, testicular volume for boys and menarchial status for girls are reported. The study goal was to provide interrelations among these measures, based on the same sample, and examine their interchangeability. Results suggest that it would be reasonable to compare research across as well as within studies based on different markers. Multiple regression analysis showed that the strongest hormone correlates of pubertal development were androgen levels (primarily testosterone in boys and primarily dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate and androstenedione in girls). Estradiol level in girls was the strongest correlate only for menarchial status. Level of testosterone-estradiol binding globulin, which was lower at successive pubertal stages for boys and showed no consistent differences for girls, may be a useful measure for studying the developmental processes and gender differences during puberty.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)246-260
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health Care
Volume8
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1987

Keywords

  • Early adolescence Pubertal stage Hormone levels Gonadotropins Sex steroids Adrenal androgens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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