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How Does CPP Alter a Child’s Growth?

How Does CPP Alter a Child’s Growth?

You want your child to grow up healthy and reach their expected height. If your child has CPP, you may have felt excited about their early growth spurt — growth is something to celebrate, after all! The misleading part about CPP growth patterns, though, is that after an initial boost in stature, a child with untreated CPP may stop growing too soon and end up being shorter than would be expected.

Adult Height After Normal Puberty vs. After Untreated CPP

CPP can cause a child to mature more quickly and at a younger age than nature intended, which may result in some physiological consequences if early puberty is not stopped.

Children with precocious puberty produce high levels of sex steroid hormones at a younger than normal age. The same hormones that cause breast or testicular development and pubic hair growth also cause rapid bone and muscle growth, as well as changes in body shape and size. When childrens’ bones mature more quickly than expected, they experience early fusion of growth plates, which causes their bones to stop growing. So after an initial growth spurt, kids with CPP reach their height much earlier than their peers.

If CPP is left untreated, the child will likely not reach their predicted adult height which is based on how tall their parents are. For example, most boys with CPP will not grow taller than 5 feet 2 inches, and girls often do not grow taller than 5 feet, as opposed to the national height averages of 5 feet 9 inches for males and 5 feet 3.5 inches in females.

Reference:
1. Children’s National. Precocious Puberty.
https://childrensnational.org/visit/conditions-and-treatments/diabetes-hormonal-disorders/precocious-puberty Accessed Feb 8, 2020