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Background: Linear growth in females is influenced by many factors, one of them is puberty. Due to theworldwide downward trend in age of menarche, early puberty could be one of the causative factors of short stature.
Objective: The study was aimed at finding out the effect of early puberty on final height and to detect deviation from the target height in young females. The age group selected for the study, ranges from 6-14 years, living in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Methods: This study was carried out in Jeddah for the complete month of July 2014. For the conduction of this study, a cross sectional study design was used. The total sample size was 586 young females selected from different areas in Jeddah. A manual height measuring tape and board was used to measure the height to the nearest value of 0.5 cm. Pubertal staging was done using the Tanner stage and the relevant data and information was gathered and assembled by the help of a questionnaire. For the analysis of data in this study, Multiple Linear Regression and Pearson’s Correlation Coefficient were used.
Results: Mean of child’s final height of 149.4 cm +/- 9.5, in comparison to the mean of their target height of 157.8 +/- 6.4, shows an 8.4 cm difference. Moreover, the correlation coefficient analysis showed a significant association between child’s height in cm and age of menarche for child with (p-value = 0.001) and (r) = 0.349. This indicates a positive relation between the two variables.
Conclusion: The menarcheal age and height are significantly related; the early onset of the signs of puberty or menarche is associated with a shorter height than the target height.