Early Adiposity Rebound and Premature Adrenarche

J Pediatr. 2017 Jul:186:72-77. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2017.03.058. Epub 2017 Apr 28.


Objectives: To examine differences in the growth pattern and the age at adiposity rebound (AR) between children with premature adrenarche (PA) and their healthy peers (controls).

Study design: In this cross-sectional study of 82 prepubertal children with PA and 63 controls, the main outcome measures were height and body mass index SDS progression, from birth to presentation at the clinic, baseline biochemical and hormonal evaluation, bone age determination, and age at AR.

Results: Children with PA were significantly taller and more adipose than controls from the first years of life. 33% of children with PA presented the growth pattern of constitutional advancement of growth (ie, early growth acceleration) vs 19% of controls (P = .045). Children with PA had an earlier AR compared with controls; mean age at AR in girls with PA was 3.73 (1.03) years vs 4.93 (1.36) years for control girls (P = .001) and in boys with PA was 3.45 (0.73) vs 5.10 (1.50) years in control boys (P = .048). Both obese and nonobese girls with PA were taller and had earlier age at AR compared with nonobese controls.

Conclusions: Early AR and constitutional advancement of growth may be triggering factors for adrenal androgen production and PA.

MeSH terms

  • Adiposity / physiology*
  • Adrenarche / physiology*
  • Age Determination by Skeleton
  • Age Factors
  • Body Height
  • Body Mass Index
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child Development / physiology*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Puberty, Precocious / physiopathology*