Disorders of Puberty: An Approach to Diagnosis and Management

 

Am Fam Physician. 2017 Nov 1;96(9):590-599.

  Patient information: See related handout on early and delayed puberty.

Author disclosure: No relevant financial affiliations.

Disorders of puberty can profoundly impact physical and psychosocial well-being. Precocious puberty is pubertal onset before eight years of age in girls and before nine years of age in boys. Patients with early isolated pubertal changes, prepubertal linear growth, and no worrisome neurologic symptoms typically have a benign pattern of development and should be monitored in the appropriate clinical context. Among patients with true precocious puberty, or full activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis, most girls have an idiopathic etiology, whereas it is commonly due to identifiable pathology on imaging in boys. History and physical examination should be followed by measurements of serum follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, and testosterone (boys) or estradiol (girls); thyroid function testing; and bone age radiography. Brain magnetic resonance imaging should be performed in girls younger than six years, all boys with precocious puberty, and children with neurologic symptoms. Delayed puberty is the absence of breast development in girls by 13 years of age and absence of testicular growth to at least 4 mL in volume or 2.5 cm in length in boys by 14 years of age. Constitutional delay of growth and puberty is a common cause of delayed puberty; however, functional or persistent hypogonadism should be excluded. History and physical examination should be followed by measurements of serum follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, and testosterone (boys) or estradiol (girls); and bone age radiography. Abnormal growth velocity necessitates assessment of serum thyroid function, prolactin, and insulinlike growth factor I. Boys 14 years and older and girls 13 years and older may benefit from sex steroid treatment to jump-start puberty. Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist may be warranted after the initial evaluation.

Puberty is a developmental stage characterized by physical and psychosocial maturation. Abnormal pubertal timing can adversely affect a child's physical and psychosocial well-being and may be caused by a range of generally benign or pathologic etiologies. Physicians must identify which findings are suitable for surveillance over time and which suggest treatable underlying pathology.

 Enlarge     Print

SORT: KEY RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PRACTICE

Clinical recommendationEvidence ratingReferences

Girls with signs of puberty before eight years of age and boys with signs of puberty before nine years of age should be evaluated for precocious puberty.

C

5, 6

Girls without breast development by 13 years of age should be evaluated for delayed puberty, and girls without menarche by 15 years of age should be evaluated for primary amenorrhea.

C

5, 7, 25

Boys who do not have testicular growth to at least 4 mL in volume or 2.5 cm in length by 14 years of age should be evaluated for delayed puberty.

C

5, 7, 25

In patients with precocious puberty, brain magnetic resonance imaging should be performed in girls younger than six years, all boys, and children with neurologic symptoms to evaluate for a central nervous system lesion.

C

5, 6, 9

Boys older than 14 years and girls older than 13 years with possible constitutional delay of growth and puberty may benefit from a short course of sex steroids to jump-start puberty.

C

7, 25


A = consistent, good-quality patient-oriented evidence; B = inconsistent or limited-quality patient-oriented evidence; C = consensus, disease-oriented evidence, usual practice, expert opinion, or case series. For information about the SORT evidence rating system, go to https://www.aafp.org/afpsort.

SORT: KEY RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PRACTICE

Clinical recommendationEvidence ratingReferences

Girls with signs of puberty before eight years of age and boys with signs of puberty before nine years of age should be evaluated for precocious puberty.

C

5, 6

Girls without breast development by 13 years of age should be evaluated for delayed puberty, and girls without menarche by 15 years of age should be evaluated for primary amenorrhea.

C

5, 7, 25

Boys who do not have testicular growth to at least 4 mL in volume or 2.5 cm in length by 14 years of age should be evaluated for delayed puberty.

C

5, 7, 25

In patients with precocious puberty, brain magnetic resonance imaging should be performed in girls younger than six years, all boys, and children with neurologic symptoms to evaluate for a central nervous system lesion.

C

5, 6, 9

Boys older than 14 years and girls older than 13 years with possible constitutional delay of growth and puberty may benefit from a short course of sex steroids to jump-start puberty.

C

7, 25


A = consistent, good-quality patient-oriented evidence; B = inconsistent or limited-quality patient-oriented evidence; C = consensus, disease-oriented evidence, usual practice, expert opinion, or case series. For information about the SORT evidence rating system, go to https://www.aafp.org/afpsort.

Hormonal and Physical Changes of Normal Development

The physical changes of puberty are a result of gonadal sex hormone production, the start of which (gonadarche) indicates pubertal onset. Gonadarche is triggered by the pulsatile release of gonadotropin-releasing hormone, which activates the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis.13 Adrenarche (i.e., adrenal androgen production leading to pubic and axillary hair, body odor, and mild acne) is a separate but usually concurrent process and does not in itself indicate true pubertal onset in boys or girls.47

In girls, increased ovarian estradiol secretion causes breast development at a mean age of 10 years (range: eight to 12 years). Menarche typically follows 2.5 years after the onset of breast development, at an average age of 12.5 years (range: nine to 15 years).15 In boys, testicular enlargement to at least 4 mL in volume or 2.5 cm in length is the first sign of true puberty and occurs at an average age of 11.5 years (range: 9.5 to 14 years).14,813  Physical changes are described using sexual maturity ratings (Table 115,9,14  and Table 215,9,14), such as Tanner stages, and are affected by body habitus and demographic factors.15,12,14

 Enlarge     Print

Table 1.

Sexual Maturity Ratings in Girls

RatingBreast developmentPubic hairPubertal event

1

Prepubertal

None

None

2

Subareolar breast buds

Sparse, long, slightly pigmented, straight or slightly curled, along the medial labia

Peak height velocity

3

Breasts and areolae are further enlarged with a continuous rounded contour

Darker, coarser, more curled, spread sparsely over the mons pubis

Peak height velocity

4

Areola and nipple form a secondary mound above the contour of the breast

Adult type, but the area covered is smaller and there is no extension to the medial thighs

Menarche

5

Mature adult stage, nipple projection without the secondary mound

Adult type and quantity, sometimes extending to the medial thighs

Menarche


Adapted with permission from Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2367, with additional information from references 1 through 5, and 14.

Table 1.

Sexual Maturity Ratings in Girls

RatingBreast developmentPubic hairPubertal event

1

Prepubertal

None

None

2

Subareolar breast buds

Sparse, long, slightly pigmented, straight or slightly curled, along the medial labia

Peak height velocity

3

Breasts and areolae are further enlarged with a continuous rounded contour

Darker, coarser, more curled, spread sparsely over the mons pubis

Peak height velocity

4

Areola and nipple form a secondary mound above the contour of the breast

Adult type, but the area covered is smaller and there is no extension to the medial thighs

Menarche

5

Mature adult stage, nipple projection without the secondary mound

Adult type and quantity, sometimes extending to the medial thighs

Menarche


Adapted with permission from Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2367, with additional information from references 1 through 5, and 14.

 Enlarge     Print

Table 2.

Sexual Maturity Ratings in Boys

RatingGenital developmentPubic hairPubertal event

1

Prepubertal

None

None

2

Enlargement of the testes (more than 4 mL in volume and more than 2.5 cm in length) and scrotum, but not the penis

Sparse, long, slightly pigmented, straight or slightly curled, at the base of the penis

None

3

Continued testicular and scrotal enlargement with penile growth

Darker, coarser, more curled, spread sparsely over the pubis

Peak height velocity, spermarche

4

Continued testicular, scrotal, and penile growth with enlargement of the glans

Adult type but the area covered is smaller and there is no extension to the medial thighs or linea alba

Peak height velocity, spermarche, facial hair, voice change

5

Mature male genitalia

Adult quality and distribution with spread to the medial thighs

None


Adapted with permission from Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2367, with additional information from references 1 through 5, and 14.

Table 2.

Sexual Maturity Ratings in Boys

RatingGenital developmentPubic hairPubertal event

1

Prepubertal

None

None

2

Enlargement of the testes (more than 4 mL in volume and more than 2.5 cm in length) and scrotum, but not the penis

Sparse, long, slightly pigmented, straight or slightly curled, at the base of the penis

None

3

Continued testicular and scrotal enlargement with penile growth

Darker, coarser, more curled, spread sparsely over the pubis

Peak height velocity, spermarche

4

Continued testicular, scrotal, and penile growth with enlargement of the glans

Adult type but the area covered is smaller and there is no extension to the medial thighs or linea alba

Peak height velocity, spermarche, facial hair, voice change

5

Mature male genitalia

Adult quality and distribution with spread to the medial thighs

None


Adapted with permission from Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2367, with additional information from references 1 through 5, and 14.

Linear growth velocity is about 5 cm per year from four years of age to puberty with a nadir before the pubertal growth spurt. Girls achieve peak height velocity during sexual maturity ratings 2 and 3 (mean: 8.3 cm per year, age 11 or 12 years) and boys during sexual maturity ratings 3 and 4 (mean: 9.5 cm per year, age 13 or 14 years). On average, girls complete linear growth at 15 years of age and boys at 17 years of age. After menarche, girls grow an average of 7 cm.14,1418

When to Suspect a Disorder of Puberty

PRECOCIOUS PUBERTY

Precocious puberty is diagnosed when secondary sexual characteristics are identified in girls younger than eight years and boys younger than nine years.5,6 Data suggest a trend toward early pubertal development. Approximately 20% of black girls and 5% to 10% of white girls seven to eight years of age in the United States have glandular breast development, particularly if obese.1923 Eight years of age can be considered a reasonable cutoff for evaluation in girls.5,6 Because of more frequent pathology in boys with precocious puberty than girls, all pubertal boys younger than nine years should be fully evaluated.5,6,24

DELAYED PUBERTY

Puberty is considered delayed when there are no signs of breast development by 13 years of age in girls or testicular enlargement by 14 years of age in boys.5,7,25 Clinicians should suspect pubertal delay if there is halting or regression of pubertal development. In girls with initial pubertal changes, absence of menarche by 15 years of age is also concerning.

Evaluation of a Suspected Disorder of Puberty

HISTORY

The clinician should inquire about the onset and progression of body odor, acne, breast or testicular development, and pubic and axillary hair. Current or previous therapies, including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or exogenous sex steroids, may indicate the underlying etiology. Neurologic symptoms may reveal intracranial pathology. For delayed puberty, a history suggestive of underlying chronic disease (e.g., fatigue, pain, abnormal stools), nutrition and exercise patterns, poor psychosocial functioning, cryptorchidism, anosmia [i.e., in Kallmann syndrome]) is important.

Growth patterns, such as constitutional delay, may be familial. Thus, family history should include pubertal timing, especially the mother's age of menarche and father's age of reaching adult height.7,9

Table 316,9  and Table 415,7,8 summarize history and physical examination findings in the evaluation of early and delayed puberty.

 Enlarge     Print

Table 3.

Early Pubertal Development: History and Physical Examination Findings

FindingsPossible diagnoses

Abdominal pain

Gonadal malignancy

Asymmetric testes

Gonadal tumor

Body mass index and weight (growth charts)

High: may be associated with precocious puberty

Café au lait spots

McCune-Albright syndrome, neurofibromatosis

Dull pink (vs. red) vaginal mucosa

Estrogen exposure (unspecified)

Enlarged thyroid

Hyper- or hypothyroidism

Exposure to exogenous sex steroids

Peripheral precocious puberty

Family history of early puberty

Familial pattern

Growth velocity

Pubertal growth spurt, pathologic growth due to an underlying condition

Head trauma

Central precocious puberty

Height (growth chart)

Short stature: thyroid disease

Hirsutism, acne, body odor

Hyperandrogenism: premature adrenarche, peripheral precocious puberty

Neurologic assessment (abnormal examination findings, or symptoms such as headaches or vision changes)

Intracranial pathology

Radiation treatment, brain tumor

Central precocious puberty

Sexual maturity rating

Early pubertal development (unspecified)

Temperature intolerance, gastrointestinal symptoms, tremor, depression, palpitations

Thyroid disease

Vaginal bleeding (isolated)

Benign variant, genital trauma or abuse, foreign body, infection, McCune-Albright syndrome

Virilization in girls

Androgen-secreting tumor, congenital adrenal hyperplasia


Information from references 1 through 6, and 9.

Table 3.

Early Pubertal Development: History and Physical Examination Findings

FindingsPossible diagnoses

Abdominal pain

Gonadal malignancy

Asymmetric testes

Gonadal tumor

Body mass index and weight (growth charts)

High: may be associated with precocious puberty

Café au lait spots

McCune-Albright syndrome, neurofibromatosis

Dull pink (vs. red) vaginal mucosa

Estrogen exposure (unspecified)

Enlarged thyroid

Hyper- or hypothyroidism

Exposure to exogenous sex steroids

Peripheral precocious puberty

Family history of early puberty

Familial pattern

Growth velocity

Pubertal growth spurt, pathologic growth due to an underlying condition

Head trauma

Central precocious puberty

Height (growth chart)

Short stature: thyroid disease

Hirsutism, acne, body odor

Hyperandrogenism: premature adrenarche, peripheral precocious puberty

Neurologic assessment (abnormal examination findings, or symptoms such as headaches or vision changes)

Intracranial pathology

Radiation treatment, brain tumor

Central precocious puberty

Sexual maturity rating

Early pubertal development (unspecified)

Temperature intolerance, gastrointestinal symptoms, tremor, depression, palpitations

Thyroid disease

Vaginal bleeding (isolated)

Benign variant, genital trauma or abuse, foreign body, infection, McCune-Albright syndrome

Virilization in girls

Androgen-secreting tumor, congenital adrenal hyperplasia


Information from references 1 through 6, and 9.

 Enlarge     Print

Table 4.

Delayed Puberty: History and Physical Examination Findings

FindingsPossible diagnoses

Abdominal pain

Gastrointestinal disease

Anosmia

Kallmann syndrome

Asymmetric testes

Oophoritis or orchitis

Body mass index and weight (on growth charts)

Low: eating disorder, caloric insufficiency, gastrointestinal or other systemic disease

Chemotherapy, radiation treatment, brain tumor

Hypogonadism

Cryptorchidism or orchidopexy

Hypogonadism

Dysmorphic features (webbed neck, short stature, low hairline)

Turner syndrome

Enlarged thyroid

Hypothyroidism

Family history of late puberty

Constitutional delay of growth and puberty

Galactorrhea

Hyperprolactinemia

Growth velocity

Peripubertal growth slowing, pathologic growth due to underlying condition

Height (growth chart)

Short stature: Turner syndrome, constitutional delay of growth and puberty

Tall stature: Klinefelter syndrome

Joint pain

Inflammatory disorder

Neurologic assessment (abnormal examination findings or symptoms such as headaches, vision changes)

Intracranial pathology

Red (vs. dull pink) or thin vaginal mucosa

Lack of estrogen exposure (hypogonadism)

Sexual maturity rating

Delayed pubertal development (unspecified)

Small, firm testes

Klinefelter syndrome

Temperature intolerance, gastrointestinal symptoms, tremor, depression, palpitations

Thyroid disease

Trauma (head)

Hypogonadism

Vasomotor symptoms in girls

Ovarian insufficiency

Weight loss, stress, excessive exercise, inadequate nutrition, fatigue

Eating disorder, caloric insufficiency


Information from references 1 through 5, 7, and 8.

Table 4.

Delayed Puberty: History and Physical Examination Findings

FindingsPossible diagnoses

Abdominal pain

Gastrointestinal disease

Anosmia

Kallmann syndrome

Asymmetric testes

Oophoritis or orchitis

Body mass index and weight (on growth charts)

Low: eating disorder, caloric insufficiency, gastrointestinal or other systemic disease

Chemotherapy, radiation treatment, brain tumor

Hypogonadism

Cryptorchidism or orchidopexy

Hypogonadism

Dysmorphic features (webbed neck, short stature, low hairline)

Turner syndrome

Enlarged thyroid

Hypothyroidism

Family history of late puberty

Constitutional delay of growth and puberty

Galactorrhea

Hyperprolactinemia

Growth velocity

Peripubertal growth slowing, pathologic growth due to underlying condition

Height (growth chart)

Short stature: Turner syndrome, constitutional delay of growth and puberty

Tall stature: Klinefelter syndrome

Joint pain

Inflammatory disorder

Neurologic assessment (abnormal examination findings or symptoms such as headaches, vision changes)

Intracranial pathology

Red (vs. dull pink) or thin vaginal mucosa

Lack of estrogen exposure (hypogonadism)

Sexual maturity rating

Delayed pubertal development (unspecified)

Small, firm testes

Klinefelter syndrome

Temperature intolerance, gastrointestinal symptoms, tremor, depression, palpitations

Thyroid disease

Trauma (head)

Hypogonadism

Vasomotor symptoms in girls

Ovarian insufficiency

Weight loss, stress, excessive exercise, inadequate nutrition, fatigue

Eating disorder, caloric insufficiency


Information from references 1 through 5, 7, and 8.

PHYSICAL EXAMINATION

Height, weight, and body mass index should be plotted on growth curves, and the height velocity should be calculated.3,23 Target height (midparental height) can be determined using the following equation: [mother's height + father's height + 13 cm in boys or − 13 cm in girls] ÷ 2.18,26 A target height differing from the projected height, as established by extending the growth curve to adulthood or bone age radiography, by approximately more than 10 cm may suggest a pathologic condition.26 Because of the effects of sex steroids on epiphyseal maturation, patients with precocious puberty may present with relatively tall stature (leading to shorter adult height), and those with delayed puberty may present with short stature.26

The patient's sexual maturity rating should be noted, as well as the amounts of acne and axillary and facial hair. In boys, determining the location, consistency, and size of the testes can evaluate for cryptorchidism, malignancy, or Klinefelter syndrome (firm testes), and help determine pubertal staging. In girls, dull pink vaginal mucosa suggests estrogen exposure; virilization (e.g., clitoromegaly) should be excluded.47,9,27

The thyroid, abdomen, and neurologic system should be examined for evidence of thyroid or gastrointestinal disease or intracranial pathology. Any dysmorphic features or café au lait spots may suggest Turner or McCune-Albright syndrome.47,9,27

Early Pubertal Development

eTable A includes the differential diagnosis of isolated pubertal changes and true precocious puberty.

 Enlarge     Print

eTable A.

Differential Diagnosis of Early Pubertal Development

Diagnosis*CharacteristicsTreatment

Generally benign variants

Lipomastia

Fat tissue but no glandular breast tissue on palpation; associated with obesity

Surveillance

Nonprogressive precocious puberty

Early but normal sequence of pubertal events that does not progress prematurely

Surveillance every 3 to 6 months to evaluate for progression of pubertal development

Premature adrenarche

Pubic and axillary hair growth, body odor, sweating, and/or mild acne; may have mildly elevated dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, but normal levels of FSH, LH, 17-hydroxyprogesterone, estradiol, and testosterone; no change in linear growth velocity or enlargement of the testes, penis, breasts, ovaries, or clitoris

Surveillance every 3 to 6 months to evaluate for progression of pubertal development; linear growth velocity should be normal (i.e., consistent with bone age)

Premature thelarche

Glandular breast tissue on palpation (as opposed to lipomastia) without other secondary sexual characteristics

Surveillance every 3 to 6 months to evaluate for progression of pubertal development

Prepubertal vaginal bleeding

Absence of secondary sexual characteristics, genital trauma or abuse, foreign body, infection, evidence of McCune-Albright syndrome; possible ovarian enlargement on ultrasonography

Surveillance for heavy or recurrent bleeding

Central (LH‐ or FSH ‐mediated) precocious puberty

Central nervous system lesion (e.g., hypothalamic hamartoma), radiation, trauma

Early but normal sequence of pubertal events; possible magnetic resonance imaging abnormalities

Treatment of underlying cause, which may involve GnRH analogue

Idiopathic

Early but normal sequence of pubertal events; possible reproductive organ enlargement on ultrasonography (unlike premature thelarche)

GnRH analogue in selected cases

Prior sex steroid exposure (e.g., peripheral precocious puberty)

Early but normal sequence of pubertal events with suggestive history

GnRH analogue in selected cases

Peripheral (LH‐ or FSH‐independent) precocious puberty

Adrenal tumor

Pubic or axillary hair growth, possibly acne and clitoromegaly; prepubertal testes; elevated adrenal hormone (e.g., dehydro-epiandrosterone sulfate); adrenal imaging abnormalities

Treatment of the tumor

Congenital adrenal hyperplasia

Pubic or axillary hair growth, possibly acne and clitoromegaly; prepubertal testes; elevated adrenal hormone (e.g., 17-hydroxy-progesterone)†

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for multisystem treatment and surveillance

Exogenous sex steroids

Exposure to contraceptives, testosterone preparations, phthalates, or lavender tree oil

Eliminate exposure

Hypothyroidism

Elevated thyroid-stimulating hormone, breast or testicular development

Treatment of thyroid disease

McCune-Albright syndrome

Multiple café au lait spots and fibrous dysplasia of bones, ovarian enlargement or testicular abnormalities on ultrasonography; may have menstrual bleeding before other development

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for multisystem treatment and surveillance

Ovarian or testicular tumor

May be apparent on physical examination or imaging and accompanied by elevated serum testosterone or estradiol; human chorionic gonadotropin–secreting germ cell tumors activate testes in boys; may occur outside of the gonads

Treatment of the tumor; ovarian tumor should be differentiated from a benign ovarian cyst


FSH = follicle-stimulating hormone; GnRH = gonadotropin-releasing hormone; LH = luteinizing hormone.

*—Pubertal development before 8 years of age in girls or 9 years of age in boys. Rare conditions, such as human chorionic gonadotropin–secreting tumors, Prader-Willi syndrome, and genetic mutations of the LH receptor and kisspeptin 1 gene, are not included in this table.

†—An early-morning 17-hydroxyprogesterone level > 200 ng per dL is suggestive of 21-hydroxylase deficiency, warranting further evaluation with an adrenocorticotropic hormone stimulation test.

Information from:

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part I: the endocrine basis of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(6):223–229.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part II: clinical aspects of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(7):281–292.

Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2366–2377.

Chulani VL, Gordon LP. Adolescent growth and development. Prim Care. 2014;41(3):465–487.

Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

Kaplowitz P, Bloch C; Section on Endocrinology, American Academy of Pediatrics. Evaluation and referral of children with signs of early puberty. Pediatrics. 2016;137(1):1–6. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/137/1/e20153732.long. Accessed May 21, 2017.

Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

eTable A.

Differential Diagnosis of Early Pubertal Development

Diagnosis*CharacteristicsTreatment

Generally benign variants

Lipomastia

Fat tissue but no glandular breast tissue on palpation; associated with obesity

Surveillance

Nonprogressive precocious puberty

Early but normal sequence of pubertal events that does not progress prematurely

Surveillance every 3 to 6 months to evaluate for progression of pubertal development

Premature adrenarche

Pubic and axillary hair growth, body odor, sweating, and/or mild acne; may have mildly elevated dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, but normal levels of FSH, LH, 17-hydroxyprogesterone, estradiol, and testosterone; no change in linear growth velocity or enlargement of the testes, penis, breasts, ovaries, or clitoris

Surveillance every 3 to 6 months to evaluate for progression of pubertal development; linear growth velocity should be normal (i.e., consistent with bone age)

Premature thelarche

Glandular breast tissue on palpation (as opposed to lipomastia) without other secondary sexual characteristics

Surveillance every 3 to 6 months to evaluate for progression of pubertal development

Prepubertal vaginal bleeding

Absence of secondary sexual characteristics, genital trauma or abuse, foreign body, infection, evidence of McCune-Albright syndrome; possible ovarian enlargement on ultrasonography

Surveillance for heavy or recurrent bleeding

Central (LH‐ or FSH ‐mediated) precocious puberty

Central nervous system lesion (e.g., hypothalamic hamartoma), radiation, trauma

Early but normal sequence of pubertal events; possible magnetic resonance imaging abnormalities

Treatment of underlying cause, which may involve GnRH analogue

Idiopathic

Early but normal sequence of pubertal events; possible reproductive organ enlargement on ultrasonography (unlike premature thelarche)

GnRH analogue in selected cases

Prior sex steroid exposure (e.g., peripheral precocious puberty)

Early but normal sequence of pubertal events with suggestive history

GnRH analogue in selected cases

Peripheral (LH‐ or FSH‐independent) precocious puberty

Adrenal tumor

Pubic or axillary hair growth, possibly acne and clitoromegaly; prepubertal testes; elevated adrenal hormone (e.g., dehydro-epiandrosterone sulfate); adrenal imaging abnormalities

Treatment of the tumor

Congenital adrenal hyperplasia

Pubic or axillary hair growth, possibly acne and clitoromegaly; prepubertal testes; elevated adrenal hormone (e.g., 17-hydroxy-progesterone)†

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for multisystem treatment and surveillance

Exogenous sex steroids

Exposure to contraceptives, testosterone preparations, phthalates, or lavender tree oil

Eliminate exposure

Hypothyroidism

Elevated thyroid-stimulating hormone, breast or testicular development

Treatment of thyroid disease

McCune-Albright syndrome

Multiple café au lait spots and fibrous dysplasia of bones, ovarian enlargement or testicular abnormalities on ultrasonography; may have menstrual bleeding before other development

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for multisystem treatment and surveillance

Ovarian or testicular tumor

May be apparent on physical examination or imaging and accompanied by elevated serum testosterone or estradiol; human chorionic gonadotropin–secreting germ cell tumors activate testes in boys; may occur outside of the gonads

Treatment of the tumor; ovarian tumor should be differentiated from a benign ovarian cyst


FSH = follicle-stimulating hormone; GnRH = gonadotropin-releasing hormone; LH = luteinizing hormone.

*—Pubertal development before 8 years of age in girls or 9 years of age in boys. Rare conditions, such as human chorionic gonadotropin–secreting tumors, Prader-Willi syndrome, and genetic mutations of the LH receptor and kisspeptin 1 gene, are not included in this table.

†—An early-morning 17-hydroxyprogesterone level > 200 ng per dL is suggestive of 21-hydroxylase deficiency, warranting further evaluation with an adrenocorticotropic hormone stimulation test.

Information from:

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part I: the endocrine basis of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(6):223–229.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part II: clinical aspects of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(7):281–292.

Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2366–2377.

Chulani VL, Gordon LP. Adolescent growth and development. Prim Care. 2014;41(3):465–487.

Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

Kaplowitz P, Bloch C; Section on Endocrinology, American Academy of Pediatrics. Evaluation and referral of children with signs of early puberty. Pediatrics. 2016;137(1):1–6. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/137/1/e20153732.long. Accessed May 21, 2017.

Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

ISOLATED PUBERTAL CHANGES

Premature thelarche, defined by isolated glandular breast tissue on palpation, should be differentiated from lipomastia (isolated fatty breast tissue), which is common in obese children.21 To differentiate these conditions, clinicians may examine the patient in the supine position, thereby making the breasts less prominent, to determine presence or absence of glandular tissue under the areolae. Isolated prepubertal vaginal bleeding not caused by trauma, abuse, a foreign body, infection, or an exceedingly rare tumor is usually benign.6,28

Premature adrenarche, driven by adrenal androgens rather than activation of the HPG axis, leads to slowly progressive appearance of pubic and axillary hair, body odor, sweating, and/or mild acne without change in linear growth velocity or enlargement of the testes, penis, breasts, ovaries, or clitoris. Dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate may be at a pubertal level (i.e., slightly elevated for the patient's chronologic age), whereas estradiol, testosterone, luteinizing hormone (LH), and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) remain at prepubertal levels.5,6,9 Less than 5% of patients have an elevated 17-hydroxyprogesterone level, suggesting mild nonclassic congenital adrenal hyperplasia, which does not usually require treatment. Thus, laboratory evaluation for such isolated findings may be delayed.6 Deferring laboratory tests also applies in cases of fine, sparse pubic hair growth that sometimes occurs in infancy.6

Patients with early isolated pubertal changes, prepubertal linear growth, and no worrisome neurologic symptoms typically have a benign pattern of development, necessitating only surveillance over three to six months to evaluate for progression.36,9,29 Laboratory or bone age assessment may be deferred initially. Notably, bone age advancement by two standard deviations has low predictive value in differentiating benign pubertal variants from concerning causes of precocious puberty.6,30

Gynecomastia, or estrogen-mediated glandular breast tissue, is common in pubertal boys. Evaluation for chronic disease; hyperprolactinemia; testicular or adrenal neoplasm; use of prescription, recreational, or performance-enhancing drugs; or hypogonadism (e.g., Klinefelter syndrome) should be initiated if symptoms persist for 18 to 24 months or the patient has no pubertal changes.31

CENTRAL AND PERIPHERAL PRECOCIOUS PUBERTY

Precocious puberty can be characterized by the pathologic location. In central precocious puberty, the HPG axis is activated, resulting in early but normal development, symmetric progression of secondary sexual characteristics, and increasing growth velocity.6,9,32 Central precocious puberty is approximately 10-fold more common in girls than in boys.33 Although usually idiopathic in girls, it can be incited by head trauma, neoplasm, radiation, or genetic conditions.5,6,9 Pathologic causes of central precocious puberty are more common in boys.5,6,9

Peripheral precocious puberty occurs when hormonal influences originating outside of the HPG axis produce incomplete, atypically sequenced or rapid pubertal progression.5,6,9 Quickly progressing or significant hyperandrogenic findings may warrant workup for congenital adrenal hyperplasia or an androgen-secreting tumor. Elevated estradiol levels in the setting of low LH may suggest an estrogen-secreting tumor.6 Hypothyroidism and exogenous steroid use should be excluded. Multiple café au lait spots and fibrous dysplasia of bones are concerning for McCune-Albright syndrome or neurofibromatosis.5,6,9

The initial workup should include measurement of serum FSH, LH, and testosterone in boys or estradiol in girls; thyroid function testing; and bone age radiography (eTable B, Figure 15,6,9). In cases of hyperandrogenic findings, measuring serum dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate and 17-hydroxyprogesterone is indicated. An LH level of more than 0.3 mIU per mL (0.3 IU per L) is the most reliable laboratory finding for central precocious puberty; however, in patients with lower values and high clinical suspicion, a gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogue stimulation test may be warranted.6,34 In cases of diagnostic uncertainty, pelvic ultrasonography can evaluate for increased uterine and ovarian volume expected for age, which may indicate central precocious puberty or a tumor.6

 Enlarge     Print

eTable B.

Diagnostic Testing in the Evaluation of Pubertal Disorders

TestCondition-specific findings
Precocious pubertyDelayed puberty

Laboratory testing (refer to local reference values)

First-line

Serum estradiol

Elevated (girls): estrogen exposure; if markedly elevated (> 100 pg per mL [367 pmol per L]), evaluate for ovarian tumor, especially if luteinizing hormone is suppressed

Low (girls): prepubertal, may suggest poor ovarian function in response to gonadotropins

Serum testosterone

Elevated: testicular (boys), adrenal, or exogenous source

Low (boys): prepubertal, poor response of testes to gonadotropin stimulation

Serum LH and follicle-stimulating hormone

Prepubertal levels: benign variant or peripheral precocious puberty

High: gonadal insufficiency, Turner syndrome, Klinefelter syndrome

Postpubertal levels > 0.3 mIU per mL (0.3 IU per L): central precocious puberty

Low: hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, constitutional delay of growth and puberty

If indicated

Directed testing (e.g., for celiac disease; diabetes mellitus; or hepatic, renal, or inflammatory conditions)

Functional hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, seek underlying cause

Gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogue stimulation test

Elevated LH: central precocious puberty (vs. benign variant) in complex clinical scenarios

Used in complex clinical scenarios

Suppressed LH but elevated sex steroids: peripheral precocious puberty

Karyotyping

Turner syndrome, Klinefelter syndrome

Serum 17-hydroxyprogesterone

Elevated: nonclassic (late onset) congenital adrenal hyperplasia

Serum dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate

Elevated: adrenal source, premature adrenarche (mild elevation) vs. peripheral precocious puberty

Normal for age: may suggest persistent hypogonadotropic hypogonadism rather than constitutional delay of growth and puberty

Serum human chorionic gonadotropin (boys)

Elevated: human chorionic gonadotropin–secreting germ cell tumor

Serum insulinlike growth factor I

Low: growth hormone deficiency (if low for both bone and chronologic age)

Serum prolactin

High: prolactin-secreting tumor, hypothyroidism, other neoplasm

Serum thyroid-stimulating hormone and free thyroxine

Thyroid disease

Thyroid disease

Imaging

First-line

Bone age radiography

Advanced (> 2 standard deviations): more likely to be central or peripheral precocious puberty, less likely to be benign pubertal variant

Delayed: constitutional delay of growth and puberty, underlying chronic disease

If indicated

Adrenal imaging

Adrenal tumor

Magnetic resonance imaging (brain and pituitary)

Central nervous system lesion

Central nervous system lesion

Pelvic or testicular ultrasonography

Ovarian or testicular tumor; greater ovarian volume may indicate central precocious puberty (vs. benign variant)

Absence of the uterus (e.g., androgen insensitivity, Müllerian system abnormalities)


LH = luteinizing hormone.

Information from:

Abitbol L, Zborovski S, Palmert MR. Evaluation of delayed puberty: what diagnostic tests should be performed in the seemingly otherwise well adolescent? Arch Dis Child. 2016;101(8):767–771.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part I: the endocrine basis of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(6):223–229.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part II: clinical aspects of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(7):281–292.

Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2366–2377.

Chulani VL, Gordon LP. Adolescent growth and development. Prim Care. 2014;41(3):465–487.

Harrington J, Palmert MR. Clinical review: distinguishing constitutional delay of growth and puberty from isolated hypogonadotropic hypogonadism: critical appraisal of available diagnostic tests. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2012;97(9):3056–3067.

Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

Kaplowitz P, Bloch C; Section on Endocrinology, American Academy of Pediatrics. Evaluation and referral of children with signs of early puberty. Pediatrics. 2016;137(1):1–6. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/137/1/e20153732.long. Accessed May 21, 2017.

Palmert MR, Dunkel L. Clinical practice. Delayed puberty. N Engl J Med. 2012;366(5):443–453.

Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

eTable B.

Diagnostic Testing in the Evaluation of Pubertal Disorders

TestCondition-specific findings
Precocious pubertyDelayed puberty

Laboratory testing (refer to local reference values)

First-line

Serum estradiol

Elevated (girls): estrogen exposure; if markedly elevated (> 100 pg per mL [367 pmol per L]), evaluate for ovarian tumor, especially if luteinizing hormone is suppressed

Low (girls): prepubertal, may suggest poor ovarian function in response to gonadotropins

Serum testosterone

Elevated: testicular (boys), adrenal, or exogenous source

Low (boys): prepubertal, poor response of testes to gonadotropin stimulation

Serum LH and follicle-stimulating hormone

Prepubertal levels: benign variant or peripheral precocious puberty

High: gonadal insufficiency, Turner syndrome, Klinefelter syndrome

Postpubertal levels > 0.3 mIU per mL (0.3 IU per L): central precocious puberty

Low: hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, constitutional delay of growth and puberty

If indicated

Directed testing (e.g., for celiac disease; diabetes mellitus; or hepatic, renal, or inflammatory conditions)

Functional hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, seek underlying cause

Gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogue stimulation test

Elevated LH: central precocious puberty (vs. benign variant) in complex clinical scenarios

Used in complex clinical scenarios

Suppressed LH but elevated sex steroids: peripheral precocious puberty

Karyotyping

Turner syndrome, Klinefelter syndrome

Serum 17-hydroxyprogesterone

Elevated: nonclassic (late onset) congenital adrenal hyperplasia

Serum dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate

Elevated: adrenal source, premature adrenarche (mild elevation) vs. peripheral precocious puberty

Normal for age: may suggest persistent hypogonadotropic hypogonadism rather than constitutional delay of growth and puberty

Serum human chorionic gonadotropin (boys)

Elevated: human chorionic gonadotropin–secreting germ cell tumor

Serum insulinlike growth factor I

Low: growth hormone deficiency (if low for both bone and chronologic age)

Serum prolactin

High: prolactin-secreting tumor, hypothyroidism, other neoplasm

Serum thyroid-stimulating hormone and free thyroxine

Thyroid disease

Thyroid disease

Imaging

First-line

Bone age radiography

Advanced (> 2 standard deviations): more likely to be central or peripheral precocious puberty, less likely to be benign pubertal variant

Delayed: constitutional delay of growth and puberty, underlying chronic disease

If indicated

Adrenal imaging

Adrenal tumor

Magnetic resonance imaging (brain and pituitary)

Central nervous system lesion

Central nervous system lesion

Pelvic or testicular ultrasonography

Ovarian or testicular tumor; greater ovarian volume may indicate central precocious puberty (vs. benign variant)

Absence of the uterus (e.g., androgen insensitivity, Müllerian system abnormalities)


LH = luteinizing hormone.

Information from:

Abitbol L, Zborovski S, Palmert MR. Evaluation of delayed puberty: what diagnostic tests should be performed in the seemingly otherwise well adolescent? Arch Dis Child. 2016;101(8):767–771.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part I: the endocrine basis of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(6):223–229.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part II: clinical aspects of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(7):281–292.

Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2366–2377.

Chulani VL, Gordon LP. Adolescent growth and development. Prim Care. 2014;41(3):465–487.

Harrington J, Palmert MR. Clinical review: distinguishing constitutional delay of growth and puberty from isolated hypogonadotropic hypogonadism: critical appraisal of available diagnostic tests. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2012;97(9):3056–3067.

Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

Kaplowitz P, Bloch C; Section on Endocrinology, American Academy of Pediatrics. Evaluation and referral of children with signs of early puberty. Pediatrics. 2016;137(1):1–6. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/137/1/e20153732.long. Accessed May 21, 2017.

Palmert MR, Dunkel L. Clinical practice. Delayed puberty. N Engl J Med. 2012;366(5):443–453.

Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

 Enlarge     Print

Diagnostic Approach to Early Pubertal Development

Figure 1.

A diagnostic approach to early pubertal development (i.e., in girls younger than eight years and boys younger than nine years). (DHEA-S = dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate; FSH = follicle-stimulating hormone; LH = luteinizing hormone; MRI = magnetic resonance imaging.)

Information from references 5, 6, and 9.

Diagnostic Approach to Early Pubertal Development


Figure 1.

A diagnostic approach to early pubertal development (i.e., in girls younger than eight years and boys younger than nine years). (DHEA-S = dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate; FSH = follicle-stimulating hormone; LH = luteinizing hormone; MRI = magnetic resonance imaging.)

Information from references 5, 6, and 9.

The appropriate timing for neuroimaging to identify central nervous system lesions (e.g., hypothalamic hamartoma, malignancy) in children with precocious puberty is controversial. Girls younger than six years, all boys with precocious puberty, and children with neurologic symptoms such as headache, vision changes, or seizures should be screened with magnetic resonance imaging.5,6,9 Some experts discourage routine neuro-imaging for asymptomatic girls six to eight years of age because pathology requiring treatment is exceedingly rare. With shared decision making, parents can weigh the risks of sedation, intravenous contrast media, and follow-up imaging (leading to anxiety and high cost) against the low likelihood that imaging will show a new central nervous system malignancy (at most 1%).5,6,35

If started early in the course of central precocious puberty, gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogues (e.g., leuprolide [Lupron]) appear to safely prevent premature fusion of growth plates, thereby preserving height potential.36 Because of high annual costs, treatment may be most appropriate if bone age suggests impending short stature or if the patient exhibits aggression (boys) or profound emotionality in response to menses (girls).10,37

Delayed Puberty

Delayed puberty is the absence of breast development by 13 years of age in girls or the absence of testicular growth to at least 4 mL in volume or 2.5 cm in length by 14 years of age in boys.79,25,38 Constitutional delay of growth and puberty is the most common cause of delayed puberty in boys (60%) and girls (30%).39,40 It represents an extreme of the normal spectrum of pubertal timing and is a diagnosis of exclusion.39,40 For more than 75% of patients with constitutional delay of growth and puberty, family history may reveal parental pubertal delay.41,42

Other etiologies of delayed puberty are categorized based on gonadotropin levels. In hypergonadotropic hypogonadism, gonadal insufficiency delays puberty and results in elevated levels of FSH and LH. Conditions causing hypergonadotropic hypogonadism can be congenital or acquired and are collectively more common in girls (26%) than in boys (7%) with delayed puberty.7,39

Hypogonadotropic hypogonadism is characterized by low levels of FSH and LH and further classified by the pathology. Functional hypogonadotropic hypogonadism is caused by chronic disease, stress, or inadequate nutrition, and the condition may be transient or reversed. Persistent hypogonadotropic hypogonadism is caused by a congenital abnormality in the HPG axis or an acquired etiology such as a central nervous system tumor, trauma, surgery, or radiation.7,43 Patients with persistent hypogonadotropic hypogonadism require treatment to induce puberty, maintain normal adult levels of sex steroids, and optimize fertility.44  eTable C includes the differential diagnosis of delayed or absent puberty.

 Enlarge     Print

eTable C.

Differential Diagnosis of Delayed or Absent Puberty

DiagnosisCharacteristicsTreatment

Generally benign variant

Constitutional delay of growth and puberty

Normal growth velocity, history of delayed puberty in parents, delayed bone age

Surveillance every 6 months to evaluate for progression of pubertal development

Functional hypogonadotropic hypogonadism*

Celiac disease

Abdominal pain, malabsorption, anemia, poor weight gain; short stature may be the only symptom; positive serology results, confirmed with endoscopic biopsy

Gluten-free diet, surveillance

Diabetes mellitus

Polyuria, polydipsia, polyphagia, weight loss, or known but poorly controlled disease; confirmed by serology

Treat underlying disease

Hyperthyroidism

Weight loss, heat intolerance, insomnia, tachycardia, hypertension; confirmed with serology

Treat underlying disease

Hypothyroidism

Weight gain, cold intolerance, fatigue, bradycardia; confirmed with serology

Treat underlying disease

Inadequate nutrition for metabolic needs (e.g., eating disorder)

Weight loss or poor weight gain, excessive exercise, food restriction, purging

Weight restoration, treatment of underlying disorder

Inflammatory bowel disease

Abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, hematochezia, poor weight gain, elevated serum erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein; confirmed with endoscopic biopsy

Treat underlying disease

Persistent hypogonadotropic hypogonadism

Genetic†

Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism

Gonadotropin-releasing hormone deficiency, bilateral cryptorchidism, micropenis, unilateral renal agenesis, synkinesis (mirror movements), cleft lip or palate, hearing loss, dental agenesis, skeletal malformations

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Kallmann syndrome‡

Anosmia in addition to congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism presentation

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Acquired

CNS trauma, surgery, or radiation

History of trauma, surgery, or CNS radiation for prior malignancy; may present similarly to CNS tumor if acute

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy; other referrals as necessary for treatment of underlying disease

CNS tumors

Headaches, vision changes, seizures, suggestive magnetic resonance imaging findings of the brain and pituitary

Referral for diagnosis and treatment of underlying disease (e.g., neurosurgeon, endocrinologist)

Hypergonadotropic hypogonadism§

Chemotherapy, radiation, or trauma to gonads

History

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Klinefelter syndrome (boys)

Tall stature, learning disabilities, relatively small testes (3 to 6 mL) for degree of androgenization; 47,XXY karyotype

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Oophoritis or orchitis

History of mumps infection in boys

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Turner syndrome (girls)

Short stature, facial dysmorphism, webbed neck, brachydactyly, heart defects; in cases of mosaicism, short stature may be the only sign; 45,X or related karyotype

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy and other comprehensive care


CNS = central nervous system.

*—Other causes include cystic fibrosis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, sickle cell disease, thalassemia, chronic renal disease, and malnutrition.

†—Other syndromes include septo-optic dysplasia, Prader-Willi, Laurence-Moon, Bardet-Biedl, and CHARGE.

‡—50% of congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism cases; five times more prevalent in boys. It is caused by disrupted migration of gonadotropin-releasing hormone–secreting neurons and the olfactory bulbs.

§—Other causes include gonadal dysgenesis, premature ovarian insufficiency (often autoimmune in nature), vanishing testes syndrome, testicular biosynthetic defects, and luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone receptor defects.

Information from:

Abitbol L, Zborovski S, Palmert MR. Evaluation of delayed puberty: what diagnostic tests should be performed in the seemingly otherwise well adolescent? Arch Dis Child. 2016;101(8):767–771.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part I: the endocrine basis of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(6):223–229.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part II: clinical aspects of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(7):281–292.

Chulani VL, Gordon LP. Adolescent growth and development. Prim Care. 2014;41(3):465–487.

Dwyer AA, Phan-Hug F, Hauschild M, Elowe-Gruau E, Pitteloud N. Transition in endocrinology: hypogonadism in adolescence. Eur J Endocrinol. 2015; 173(1):R15–R24.

Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

Kaplowitz PB. Delayed puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2010;31(5):189–195.

Kim SH. Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and Kallmann Syndrome: past, present, and future. Endocrinol Metab (Seoul). 2015;30(4):456–466.

Palmert MR, Dunkel L. Clinical practice. Delayed puberty. N Engl J Med. 2012;366(5):443–453.

Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

Villanueva C, Argente J. Pathology or normal variant: what constitutes a delay in puberty? Horm Res Paediatr. 2014;82(4):213–221.

eTable C.

Differential Diagnosis of Delayed or Absent Puberty

DiagnosisCharacteristicsTreatment

Generally benign variant

Constitutional delay of growth and puberty

Normal growth velocity, history of delayed puberty in parents, delayed bone age

Surveillance every 6 months to evaluate for progression of pubertal development

Functional hypogonadotropic hypogonadism*

Celiac disease

Abdominal pain, malabsorption, anemia, poor weight gain; short stature may be the only symptom; positive serology results, confirmed with endoscopic biopsy

Gluten-free diet, surveillance

Diabetes mellitus

Polyuria, polydipsia, polyphagia, weight loss, or known but poorly controlled disease; confirmed by serology

Treat underlying disease

Hyperthyroidism

Weight loss, heat intolerance, insomnia, tachycardia, hypertension; confirmed with serology

Treat underlying disease

Hypothyroidism

Weight gain, cold intolerance, fatigue, bradycardia; confirmed with serology

Treat underlying disease

Inadequate nutrition for metabolic needs (e.g., eating disorder)

Weight loss or poor weight gain, excessive exercise, food restriction, purging

Weight restoration, treatment of underlying disorder

Inflammatory bowel disease

Abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, hematochezia, poor weight gain, elevated serum erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein; confirmed with endoscopic biopsy

Treat underlying disease

Persistent hypogonadotropic hypogonadism

Genetic†

Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism

Gonadotropin-releasing hormone deficiency, bilateral cryptorchidism, micropenis, unilateral renal agenesis, synkinesis (mirror movements), cleft lip or palate, hearing loss, dental agenesis, skeletal malformations

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Kallmann syndrome‡

Anosmia in addition to congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism presentation

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Acquired

CNS trauma, surgery, or radiation

History of trauma, surgery, or CNS radiation for prior malignancy; may present similarly to CNS tumor if acute

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy; other referrals as necessary for treatment of underlying disease

CNS tumors

Headaches, vision changes, seizures, suggestive magnetic resonance imaging findings of the brain and pituitary

Referral for diagnosis and treatment of underlying disease (e.g., neurosurgeon, endocrinologist)

Hypergonadotropic hypogonadism§

Chemotherapy, radiation, or trauma to gonads

History

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Klinefelter syndrome (boys)

Tall stature, learning disabilities, relatively small testes (3 to 6 mL) for degree of androgenization; 47,XXY karyotype

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Oophoritis or orchitis

History of mumps infection in boys

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy

Turner syndrome (girls)

Short stature, facial dysmorphism, webbed neck, brachydactyly, heart defects; in cases of mosaicism, short stature may be the only sign; 45,X or related karyotype

Referral to a pediatric endocrinologist for hormone therapy and other comprehensive care


CNS = central nervous system.

*—Other causes include cystic fibrosis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, sickle cell disease, thalassemia, chronic renal disease, and malnutrition.

†—Other syndromes include septo-optic dysplasia, Prader-Willi, Laurence-Moon, Bardet-Biedl, and CHARGE.

‡—50% of congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism cases; five times more prevalent in boys. It is caused by disrupted migration of gonadotropin-releasing hormone–secreting neurons and the olfactory bulbs.

§—Other causes include gonadal dysgenesis, premature ovarian insufficiency (often autoimmune in nature), vanishing testes syndrome, testicular biosynthetic defects, and luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone receptor defects.

Information from:

Abitbol L, Zborovski S, Palmert MR. Evaluation of delayed puberty: what diagnostic tests should be performed in the seemingly otherwise well adolescent? Arch Dis Child. 2016;101(8):767–771.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part I: the endocrine basis of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(6):223–229.

Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part II: clinical aspects of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(7):281–292.

Chulani VL, Gordon LP. Adolescent growth and development. Prim Care. 2014;41(3):465–487.

Dwyer AA, Phan-Hug F, Hauschild M, Elowe-Gruau E, Pitteloud N. Transition in endocrinology: hypogonadism in adolescence. Eur J Endocrinol. 2015; 173(1):R15–R24.

Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

Kaplowitz PB. Delayed puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2010;31(5):189–195.

Kim SH. Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and Kallmann Syndrome: past, present, and future. Endocrinol Metab (Seoul). 2015;30(4):456–466.

Palmert MR, Dunkel L. Clinical practice. Delayed puberty. N Engl J Med. 2012;366(5):443–453.

Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

Villanueva C, Argente J. Pathology or normal variant: what constitutes a delay in puberty? Horm Res Paediatr. 2014;82(4):213–221.

Initial workup should include measurements of serum FSH, LH, testosterone in boys or estradiol in girls, and bone age radiography (eTable B, Figure 2 7,8,25,44,45). If abnormal growth velocity is a concern, serum thyroid function, prolactin, and insulinlike growth factor I should be assessed.7 Constitutional delay of growth and puberty can be difficult to distinguish from persistent hypogonadotropic hypogonadism; the latter may be diagnosed at 18 years of age if there is inadequate response to jump-start therapy (which is defined later in this section), and sex steroid replacement is still required.7,45

 Enlarge     Print

Diagnostic Approach to Late or Absent Pubertal Development

Figure 2.

A diagnostic approach to late or absent pubertal development. (FSH = follicle-stimulating hormone; LH = luteinizing hormone.)

Information from references 7, 8,25, 44, and 45.

Diagnostic Approach to Late or Absent Pubertal Development


Figure 2.

A diagnostic approach to late or absent pubertal development. (FSH = follicle-stimulating hormone; LH = luteinizing hormone.)

Information from references 7, 8,25, 44, and 45.

Bone age indicates the degree of sex steroid effect on bone maturation and future growth potential.7,9 For example, patients with constitutional delay of growth and puberty generally have a delay of more than two years, but this finding is nonspecific.8

Delayed puberty can cause significant psychological distress and low self-esteem.46,47 Girls older than 13 years and boys older than 14 years with possible constitutional delay of growth and puberty or gonadotropin-releasing hormone deficiency may be offered jump-start therapy to induce puberty.5,7,8,25,45 For example, treating boys with testosterone cypionate or enanthate (e.g., 50 to 100 mg intramuscularly per month) and girls with overnight transdermal estradiol (e.g., 6.2 mcg, one-fourth of the 25-mcg 24-hour patch) for three to six months may accelerate attainment of final adult height and generally does not lead to premature epiphysis closure.7,25 If pubertal progression does not occur within four to six months after completing therapy, further evaluation for persistent hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and long-term hormone therapy should be initiated.5,7  Indications for referral to a pediatric endocrinologist are listed in eTable D.

 Enlarge     Print

eTable D.

Indications for Referral to a Pediatric Endocrinologist in Children with Suspected Abnormalities of Puberty

Concern for early puberty*

Any pubertal changes before 6 years of age in girls and 9 years of age in boys

Pubertal changes with associated headaches, vision changes, new-onset seizures

Rapid pubertal progression

Confirmed central or peripheral precocious puberty (not a generally benign variant)

Known predisposing conditions (e.g., neurofibromatosis, previous irradiation, known neoplasm)

Concern for delayed puberty

Boys without testicular growth to at least 4 mL in volume or 2.5 cm in length by 14 years of age

Girls without breast development by 13 years of age


note: Indications are based on referring clinician's training and resources. Referral may be delayed or deferred if appropriate evaluation and treatment can be performed.

*—Before referral, consider initiating evaluation with measurement of serum luteinizing hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, testosterone (boys) or estradiol (girls), and thyroid-stimulating hormone; bone age; and if indicated, brain magnetic resonance imaging.

†—Before referral, consider initiating evaluation with measurement of serum luteinizing hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, and testosterone (boys) or estradiol (girls), and bone age. In those with short stature, serum thyroid-stimulating hormone, prolactin, and insulinlike growth factor I should be measured.

Information from:

Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2366–2377.

Guaraldi F, Beccuti G, Gori D, Ghizzoni L. Management of endocrine disease: long-term outcomes of the treatment of central precocious puberty. Eur J Endocrinol. 2016;174(3):R79–R87.

Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

Kaplowitz PB. Delayed puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2010;31(5):189–195.

Kaplowitz PB. Do 6–8 year old girls with central precocious puberty need routine brain imaging? Int J Pediatr Endocrinol. 2016;2016:9.

Kaplowitz P, Bloch C; Section on Endocrinology, American Academy of Pediatrics. Evaluation and referral of children with signs of early puberty. Pediatrics. 2016;137(1):1–6. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/137/1/e20153732.long. Accessed May 21, 2017.

Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

Mul D, Fredriks AM, van Buuren S, et al. Pubertal development in The Netherlands 1965–1997. Pediatr Res. 2001;50(4):479–486.

Palmert MR, Dunkel L. Clinical practice. Delayed puberty. N Engl J Med. 2012;366(5):443–453.

Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

Villanueva C, Argente J. Pathology or normal variant: what constitutes a delay in puberty? Horm Res Paediatr. 2014;82(4):213–221.

eTable D.

Indications for Referral to a Pediatric Endocrinologist in Children with Suspected Abnormalities of Puberty

Concern for early puberty*

Any pubertal changes before 6 years of age in girls and 9 years of age in boys

Pubertal changes with associated headaches, vision changes, new-onset seizures

Rapid pubertal progression

Confirmed central or peripheral precocious puberty (not a generally benign variant)

Known predisposing conditions (e.g., neurofibromatosis, previous irradiation, known neoplasm)

Concern for delayed puberty

Boys without testicular growth to at least 4 mL in volume or 2.5 cm in length by 14 years of age

Girls without breast development by 13 years of age


note: Indications are based on referring clinician's training and resources. Referral may be delayed or deferred if appropriate evaluation and treatment can be performed.

*—Before referral, consider initiating evaluation with measurement of serum luteinizing hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, testosterone (boys) or estradiol (girls), and thyroid-stimulating hormone; bone age; and if indicated, brain magnetic resonance imaging.

†—Before referral, consider initiating evaluation with measurement of serum luteinizing hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, and testosterone (boys) or estradiol (girls), and bone age. In those with short stature, serum thyroid-stimulating hormone, prolactin, and insulinlike growth factor I should be measured.

Information from:

Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2366–2377.

Guaraldi F, Beccuti G, Gori D, Ghizzoni L. Management of endocrine disease: long-term outcomes of the treatment of central precocious puberty. Eur J Endocrinol. 2016;174(3):R79–R87.

Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

Kaplowitz PB. Delayed puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2010;31(5):189–195.

Kaplowitz PB. Do 6–8 year old girls with central precocious puberty need routine brain imaging? Int J Pediatr Endocrinol. 2016;2016:9.

Kaplowitz P, Bloch C; Section on Endocrinology, American Academy of Pediatrics. Evaluation and referral of children with signs of early puberty. Pediatrics. 2016;137(1):1–6. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/137/1/e20153732.long. Accessed May 21, 2017.

Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

Mul D, Fredriks AM, van Buuren S, et al. Pubertal development in The Netherlands 1965–1997. Pediatr Res. 2001;50(4):479–486.

Palmert MR, Dunkel L. Clinical practice. Delayed puberty. N Engl J Med. 2012;366(5):443–453.

Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

Villanueva C, Argente J. Pathology or normal variant: what constitutes a delay in puberty? Horm Res Paediatr. 2014;82(4):213–221.

This article updates a previous article on this topic by Blondell, et al.48

Data Sources: A PubMed search was completed using the MeSH function with the key term puberty and at least one of the following qualifiers: early, precocious, delayed, absent, or disorder. The search included meta-analyses, randomized controlled trials, observational studies, and reviews. Nonhuman studies and studies older than 10 years were excluded. The reference lists of included reviews were searched for additional studies of interest. Other searches included Essential Evidence Plus, the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force website. Search dates: October 1, 2016, to May 21, 2017.

The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Departments of the Army, Navy, or Air Force; the Department of Defense; or the U.S. government.

The Authors

show all author info

DAVID A. KLEIN, MD, MPH, is an associate program director of the National Capitol Consortium Family Medicine Residency, Fort Belvoir, Va. He is also an assistant professor of family medicine and pediatrics at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Md....

JILL E. EMERICK, MD, is a pediatric endocrinologist at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, Md. She is also an assistant professor of pediatrics at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.

JILLIAN E. SYLVESTER, MD, is a fellow at the National Capitol Consortium Military Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship. At the time this article was written, she was a third-year resident at the National Capitol Consortium Family Medicine Residency.

KAREN S. VOGT, MD, is a program director of the pediatric endocrinology fellowship at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. She is also an associate professor of pediatrics at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.

Address correspondence to David A. Klein, MD, MPH, Fort Belvoir Community Hospital, Department of Family Medicine, 9300 DeWitt Loop, Fort Belvoir, VA, 22060 (e-mail: david.a.klein26.mil@mail.mil). Reprints are not available from the authors.

Author disclosure: No relevant financial affiliations.

REFERENCES

show all references

1. Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part I: the endocrine basis of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(6):223–229....

2. Bordini B, Rosenfield RL. Normal pubertal development: part II: clinical aspects of puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2011;32(7):281–292.

3. Chulani VL, Gordon LP. Adolescent growth and development. Prim Care. 2014;41(3):465–487.

4. Holland-Hall C, Burstein GR. Adolescent development. In: Kliegman R, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW III, et al., eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:926–936.

5. Styne DM, Grumbach MM. Physiology and disorders of puberty. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg H, Williams RH, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier; 2016:1074–1218.

6. Kaplowitz P, Bloch C; Section on Endocrinology, American Academy of Pediatrics. Evaluation and referral of children with signs of early puberty. Pediatrics. 2016;137(1):1–6. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/137/1/e20153732.long. Accessed May 21, 2017.

7. Palmert MR, Dunkel L. Clinical practice. Delayed puberty. N Engl J Med. 2012;366(5):443–453.

8. Abitbol L, Zborovski S, Palmert MR. Evaluation of delayed puberty: what diagnostic tests should be performed in the seemingly otherwise well adolescent? Arch Dis Child. 2016;101(8):767–771.

9. Carel JC, Léger J. Clinical practice. Precocious puberty. N Engl J Med. 2008;358(22):2366–2377.

10. Guaraldi F, Beccuti G, Gori D, Ghizzoni L. Management of endocrine disease: long-term outcomes of the treatment of central precocious puberty. Eur J Endocrinol. 2016;174(3):R79–R87.

11. Susman EJ, Houts RM, Steinberg L, et al.; Eunice Kennedy Shriver NICHD Early Child Care Research Network. Longitudinal development of secondary sexual characteristics in girls and boys between ages 9 1/2 and 15 1/2 years. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2010;164(2):166–173.

12. Herman-Giddens ME, Steffes J, Harris D, et al. Secondary sexual characteristics in boys: data from the Pediatric Research in Office Settings Network. Pediatrics. 2012;130(5):e1058–e1068.

13. Herman-Giddens ME, Wang L, Koch G. Secondary sexual characteristics in boys: estimates from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III, 1988–1994. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2001;155(9):1022–1028.

14. Tanner JM, Davies PS. Clinical longitudinal standards for height and height velocity for North American children. J Pediatr. 1985;107(3):317–329.

15. Biro FM, Huang B, Crawford PB, et al. Pubertal correlates in black and white girls. J Pediatr. 2006;148(2):234–240.

16. Biro FM, Lucky AW, Huster GA, Morrison JA. Pubertal staging in boys [published correction appears in J Pediatr. 1995;127(4):674]. J Pediatr. 1995;127(1):100–102.

17. Kelly A, Winer KK, Kalkwarf H, et al. Age-based reference ranges for annual height velocity in US children. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2014;99(6):2104–2112.

18. Rogol AD, Hayden GF. Etiologies and early diagnosis of short stature and growth failure in children and adolescents. J Pediatr. 2014;164(5 suppl):S1–14.e6.

19. Herman-Giddens ME, Slora EJ, Wasserman RC, et al. Secondary sexual characteristics and menses in young girls seen in office practice: a study from the Pediatric Research in Office Settings network. Pediatrics. 1997;99(4):505–512.

20. Wu T, Mendola P, Buck GM. Ethnic differences in the presence of secondary sex characteristics and menarche among US girls: the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1988–1994. Pediatrics. 2002;110(4):752–757.

21. Rosenfield RL, Lipton RB, Drum ML. Thelarche, pubarche, and menarche attainment in children with normal and elevated body mass index [published correction appears in Pediatrics. 2009;123(4):1255]. Pediatrics. 2009;123(1):84–88.

22. Biro FM, Galvez MP, Greenspan LC, et al. Pubertal assessment method and baseline characteristics in a mixed longitudinal study of girls. Pediatrics. 2010;126(3):e583–e590.

23. De Leonibus C, Marcovecchio ML, Chiavaroli V, de Giorgis T, Chiarelli F, Mohn A. Timing of puberty and physical growth in obese children: a longitudinal study in boys and girls. Pediatr Obes. 2014;9(4):292–299.

24. Soriano-Guillén L, Corripio R, Labarta JI, et al. Central precocious puberty in children living in Spain: incidence, prevalence, and influence of adoption and immigration. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2010;95(9):4305–4313.

25. Kaplowitz PB. Delayed puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2010;31(5):189–195.

26. Barstow C, Rerucha C. Evaluation of short and tall stature in children. Am Fam Physician. 2015;92(1):43–50.

27. Muir A. Precocious puberty. Pediatr Rev. 2006;27(10):373–381.

28. Nella AA, Kaplowitz PB, Ramnitz MS, Nandagopal R. Benign vaginal bleeding in 24 prepubertal patients: clinical, biochemical and imaging features. J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab. 2014;27(9–10):821–825.

29. Bizzarri C, Spadoni GL, Bottaro G, et al. The response to gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) stimulation test does not predict the progression to true precocious puberty in girls with onset of premature thelarche in the first three years of life. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2014;99(2):433–439.

30. DeSalvo DJ, Mehra R, Vaidyanathan P, Kaplowitz PB. In children with premature adrenarche, bone age advancement by 2 or more years is common and generally benign. J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab. 2013;26(3–4):215–221.

31. Thiruchelvam P, Walker JN, Rose K, Lewis J, Al-Mufti R. Gynaecomastia. BMJ. 2016;354:i4833.

32. Papadimitriou A, Beri D, Tsialla A, Fretzayas A, Psychou F, Nicolaidou P. Early growth acceleration in girls with idiopathic precocious puberty. J Pediatr. 2006;149(1):43–46.

33. Teilmann G, Pedersen CB, Jensen TK, Skakkebaek NE, Juul A. Prevalence and incidence of precocious pubertal development in Denmark: an epidemiologic study based on national registries. Pediatrics. 2005;116(6):1323–1328.

34. Houk CP, Kunselman AR, Lee PA. Adequacy of a single unstimulated luteinizing hormone level to diagnose central precocious puberty in girls. Pediatrics. 2009;123(6):e1059–e1063.

35. Kaplowitz PB. Do 6–8 year old girls with central precocious puberty need routine brain imaging? Int J Pediatr Endocrinol. 2016;2016:9.

36. Głąb E, Wikiera B, Bieniasz J, Barg E. The influence of GnRH analog therapy on growth in central precocious puberty. Adv Clin Exp Med. 2016;25(1):27–32.

37. Carel JC, Eugster EA, Rogol A, et al.; ESPE-LWPES GnRH Analogs Consensus Conference Group. Consensus statement on the use of gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogs in children. Pediatrics. 2009;123(4):e752–e762.

38. Mul D, Fredriks AM, van Buuren S, Oostdijk W, Verloove-Vanhorick SP, Wit JM. Pubertal development in The Netherlands 1965–1997. Pediatr Res. 2001;50(4):479–486.

39. Sedlmeyer IL, Palmert MR. Delayed puberty: analysis of a large case series from an academic center. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2002;87(4):1613–1620.

40. Lawaetz JG, Hagen CP, Mieritz MG, Blomberg Jensen M, Petersen JH, Juul A. Evaluation of 451 Danish boys with delayed puberty: diagnostic use of a new puberty nomogram and effects of oral testosterone therapy. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2015;100(4):1376–1385.

41. Wehkalampi K, Widén E, Laine T, Palotie A, Dunkel L. Patterns of inheritance of constitutional delay of growth and puberty in families of adolescent girls and boys referred to specialist pediatric care. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2008;93(3):723–728.

42. Winter S, Ousidhoum A, McElreavey K, Brauner R. Constitutional delay of puberty: presentation and inheritance pattern in 48 familial cases. BMC Pediatr. 2016;16:37.

43. Kim SH. Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and Kallmann syndrome: past, present, and future. Endocrinol Metab (Seoul). 2015;30(4):456–466.

44. Villanueva C, Argente J. Pathology or normal variant: what constitutes a delay in puberty? Horm Res Paediatr. 2014;82(4):213–221.

45. Dwyer AA, Phan-Hug F, Hauschild M, Elowe-Gruau E, Pitteloud N. Transition in endocrinology: hypogonadism in adolescence. Eur J Endocrinol. 2015;173(1):R15–R24.

46. Crowne EC, Shalet SM, Wallace WH, Eminson DM, Price DA. Final height in boys with untreated constitutional delay in growth and puberty. Arch Dis Child. 1990;65(10):1109–1112.

47. Crowne EC, Shalet SM, Wallace WH, Eminson DM, Price DA. Final height in girls with untreated constitutional delay in growth and puberty. Eur J Pediatr. 1991;150(10):708–712.

48. Blondell RD, Foster MB, Dave KC. Disorders of puberty. Am Fam Physician. 1999;60(1):209–218.

 

 

Copyright © 2017 by the American Academy of Family Physicians.
This content is owned by the AAFP. A person viewing it online may make one printout of the material and may use that printout only for his or her personal, non-commercial reference. This material may not otherwise be downloaded, copied, printed, stored, transmitted or reproduced in any medium, whether now known or later invented, except as authorized in writing by the AAFP. Contact afpserv@aafp.org for copyright questions and/or permission requests.

Want to use this article elsewhere? Get Permissions


More in AFP


Related Content


More in Pubmed

MOST RECENT ISSUE


Dec 15, 2018

Access the latest issue of American Family Physician

Read the Issue


Email Alerts

Don't miss a single issue. Sign up for the free AFP email table of contents.

Sign Up Now

Navigate this Article