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Growth processes leading to a large or small adult size


Gasser, Theo; Sheehy, Anne; Molinari, Luciano; Largo, Remo H (2001). Growth processes leading to a large or small adult size. Annals of Human Biology, 28(3):319-27.

Abstract

BACKGROUND The way in which a large size in anthropometric variables is achieved is a longstanding problem, since the pubertal spurt shows statistically and clinically little association with adult size (mostly studied for height). By analysing longitudinal growth of groups of subjects with a large or a small adult size separately for height, leg and sitting height, and bihumeral and biiliac width, we studied this problem in some detail. Of interest are growth patterns specific for these variables and for boys or girls. METHODS The data consist of 120 boys and 112 girls followed longitudinally from 4 weeks until adulthood. Statistically, structural average velocity curves were computed for each variable and each subgroup separately for comparison. This velocity curve represents the average intensity and the average tempo of growth. Since the area under the velocity curve is adult size, differences in the growth process can be visualized. RESULTS Both sexes show similar patterns in reaching a small or large adult size. The different variables, however, show marked differences. Only for legs is the pubertal spurt delayed for the large groups (with additional gains in prepubertal years). For sitting height and biiliac width, a slightly elevated velocity all along development (after 2 years) leads to a larger size and for bihumeral width the size of the pubertal peak is decisive. CONCLUSIONS The steering of growth to a certain target size is qualitatively similar for boys and girls, but quite different for different anthropometric variables. This leads to questions about endocrinological control for various parts of the body and differential bone growth in development.

Abstract

BACKGROUND The way in which a large size in anthropometric variables is achieved is a longstanding problem, since the pubertal spurt shows statistically and clinically little association with adult size (mostly studied for height). By analysing longitudinal growth of groups of subjects with a large or a small adult size separately for height, leg and sitting height, and bihumeral and biiliac width, we studied this problem in some detail. Of interest are growth patterns specific for these variables and for boys or girls. METHODS The data consist of 120 boys and 112 girls followed longitudinally from 4 weeks until adulthood. Statistically, structural average velocity curves were computed for each variable and each subgroup separately for comparison. This velocity curve represents the average intensity and the average tempo of growth. Since the area under the velocity curve is adult size, differences in the growth process can be visualized. RESULTS Both sexes show similar patterns in reaching a small or large adult size. The different variables, however, show marked differences. Only for legs is the pubertal spurt delayed for the large groups (with additional gains in prepubertal years). For sitting height and biiliac width, a slightly elevated velocity all along development (after 2 years) leads to a larger size and for bihumeral width the size of the pubertal peak is decisive. CONCLUSIONS The steering of growth to a certain target size is qualitatively similar for boys and girls, but quite different for different anthropometric variables. This leads to questions about endocrinological control for various parts of the body and differential bone growth in development.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Prevention Institute (EBPI)
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2001
Deposited On:21 May 2015 09:49
Last Modified:08 Dec 2017 13:05
Publisher:Informa Healthcare
ISSN:0301-4460
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/030144601300119124
PubMed ID:11393338

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