We have evaluated height, weight, bone age, somatomedin-C levels, and pubertal development in 114 Sicilian patients affected by sickle cell diseases (SCDs). Thirty-one had homozygous sickle hemoglobin (SS), 55 S-beta 0 thalassemia, and 28 S-beta + thalassemia. In both children and adults, the mean height and weight were approximately 1 SD below the normal mean for age. The height was below the normal range only in a few subjects (8 children and 4 adult women). Somatomedin-C levels were within the normal range in most of the patients (37/44 children and 17/22 adults). Bone age revealed a slight delay in skeletal maturation (mean chronological age and bone age were 7.7 +/- 3 and 7.11 +/- 2.9 respectively; p < 0.05). Mean age at menarche was increased compared to normal subjects. Our findings show that Sicilian patients with SCD exhibit a moderate delay of growth and adolescence but attain a final height within the normal range.