Impact of Body Mass Index on Luteinizing Hormone Secretion in Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Stimulation Tests of Boys Experiencing Precocious Puberty

Neuroendocrinology. 2013;97(3):225-31. doi: 10.1159/000342342. Epub 2012 Sep 20.


Objective: Excess adiposity may influence various aspects of pubertal development, including the timing of pubertal initiation and hormonal parameters during puberty. The aim of the study was to evaluate the impact of body mass index (BMI) on luteinizing hormone (LH) secretion to gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) stimulation test in boys with precocious puberty.

Methods: Boys with precocious puberty, who were normal weight, overweight, and obese underwent GnRH stimulation tests between 2003 and 2010. Subjects were classified as normal weight (BMI ≥5th percentile and BMI <85th percentile), overweight (BMI ≥85th percentile and BMI <95th percentile), and obese (BMI ≥95th percentile).

Results: Of 56 children whose data were included in the final analysis, mean age at diagnosis was 8.7 ± 1.0 years. The majority of boys were of normal weight (n = 28, 50%), while 15 children (26%) were overweight, and 13 (23%) obese. Peak LH levels after GnRH stimulation were 19.8 ± 8.8, 9.0 ± 3.5, and 8.1 ± 4.0 mIU/ml among normal weight, overweight, and obese subjects, respectively (p < 0.001 for all comparisons). By multivariate analysis, there was a significant negative association of BMI with peak-stimulated LH level.

Conclusions: The higher BMI is associated with lower LH response to the GnRH stimulation test in boys experiencing precocious puberty. In boys with precocious puberty, BMI should be considered when interpreting GnRH stimulation test.

MeSH terms

  • Body Mass Index*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / blood
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / metabolism
  • Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Luteinizing Hormone / blood*
  • Luteinizing Hormone / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Puberty, Precocious / blood*
  • Testosterone / blood


  • Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone
  • Testosterone
  • Luteinizing Hormone
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone