Final height outcome in girls with Turner syndrome treated with a combination of low dose oestrogen and oxandrolone

Eur J Pediatr. 1997 May;156(5):358-62. doi: 10.1007/s004310050614.


Final stature in girls with Turner syndrome treated with combination of low dose oestrogen and oxandrolone. Nineteen prepubertal girls with Turner syndrome (mean age 10.9 years, range, 8.9-14.2 years) were randomly assigned to receive either oxandrolone (0.05 mg/kg/day) or ethinyloestradiol (40 ng/kg/day) for 1 year. Subsequently the alternate therapy was added and the combination given until attainment of final height. Ethinyloestradiol was gradually increased at the age of 12.5 years in order to induce secondary sexual characteristics. The duration of treatment was a mean of 5.2 years (range, 3.7 years) when the 1st year of monotherapy was included. Therapy produced a sustained acceleration in growth rate for a duration of 4 years and eventually has resulted in an increment of mean adult height of 3 cm relative to pre-treatment projected height with mean values of 146.5 cm versus 143.5 cm respectively. The moderate side-effects observed did not cause any of the girls to discontinue treatment. Nevertheless, amelioration of adult height appears to be modest, notably in comparison to published data of growth hormone treatment and 4 girls had a decrease in final height prediction. CONCLUSION Combination of low dose of oxandrolone and oestrogen may have a moderate but positive impact on final height in girls with Turner syndrome. However, some girls do worse than predicted in term of final height using this regimen. Oestrogen therapy started at low dose around the age of 10 years and increased gradually at approximately 12.5 years to induce secondary sexual characteristics does not have a deleterious effect on adult height in Turner syndrome. In summary, low dose oxandrolone-oestrogen treatment was found to accelerate the tempo of growth in girls with Turner syndrome, but did not appear to have a consistent effect on final height.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anabolic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Body Height / drug effects*
  • Child
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Estrogens / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Growth / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Oxandrolone / therapeutic use*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Puberty / drug effects
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Turner Syndrome / drug therapy*


  • Anabolic Agents
  • Estrogens
  • Oxandrolone