Premature pubarche

Etiological heterogeneity

Selma F. Siegel, David N. Finegold, Maria D. Urban, Robert Mc Vie, Peter Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

57 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Premature pubarche is characterized by pubic hair, adult type body odor, acne, and axillary hair before 8 yr of age in girls and 9.5 yr of age in boys. Causes of this premature virilization include premature adrenarche, mild errors of steroidogenesis, precocious puberty, and adrenal and gonadal tumors. To determine whether any clinical parameters are helpful in distinguishing which children should undergo further evaluation for mild congenital adrenal hyperplasia, we performed ACTH stimulation tests in 69 children with premature pubarche and 8 pubertal controls. Patients were categorized as having typical (pubic hair with or without axillary hair and body odor) or atypical (pubic hair and genital enlargement) premature pubarche. Blood samples, before and 30 min after iv bolus administration of synthetic ACTH, were obtained for progesterone, 17-hydroxypregnenolone, 17-hydroxyprogesterone, dehydroepiandrosterone, androstenedione, 11-deoxycortisol, and cortisol measurements. The patients were divided into 4 groups based on their individual responses to ACTH stimulation: premature adrenarche (no apparent defect in steroidogenesis), possible decreased 21-hydroxylase activity, possible decreased 3 β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase activity, and indeterminate responses. Five of 11 (45%) children with atypical premature pubarche and 7 of 58 (12%) children with typical premature pubarche were found to have evidence of mild defects in steroidogenesis. Similar to previous reports in postpubertal women, only responses to ACTH stimulation allowed accurate classification of these patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)239-247
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Volume74
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1992

Fingerprint

Adrenarche
Hair
Adrenocorticotropic Hormone
Odors
17-alpha-Hydroxypregnenolone
3-Hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenases
Cortodoxone
Cosyntropin
17-alpha-Hydroxyprogesterone
Steroid 21-Hydroxylase
Defects
Dehydroepiandrosterone
Androstenedione
Progesterone
Hydrocortisone
Tumors
Virilism
Blood
Precocious Puberty
Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical

Cite this

Siegel, Selma F. ; Finegold, David N. ; Urban, Maria D. ; Mc Vie, Robert ; Lee, Peter. / Premature pubarche : Etiological heterogeneity. In: Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 1992 ; Vol. 74, No. 2. pp. 239-247.
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Premature pubarche : Etiological heterogeneity. / Siegel, Selma F.; Finegold, David N.; Urban, Maria D.; Mc Vie, Robert; Lee, Peter.

In: Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, Vol. 74, No. 2, 01.01.1992, p. 239-247.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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