Pubertal maturation characteristics and the rate of bone mass development longitudinally toward menarche

S C Van Coeverden, C M De Ridder, J C Roos, M A Van't Hof, J C Netelenbos, H A Delemarre-Van de Waal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


To assess risks for osteoporosis and to compare bone mass in different groups of healthy children or children with diseases, it is important to have knowledge of their sexual maturation status during puberty. The aim of our study was to evaluate bone mass formation longitudinally in relation to pubertal maturation characteristics in healthy white girls. We investigated the bone mineral content (BMC) and the bone mineral density (BMD) at different skeletal sites in 151 girls with increasing pubertal stages in relation with their chronological age and with an early or late onset of puberty or menarche and with a slow or fast maturation. Bone mass was measured at the onset of puberty, during puberty, and at menarche. We conclude the following: (1) from midpuberty to menarche, the increase in bone mass formation is highest at all skeletal sites in white girls; (2) early mature girls at the onset of puberty have slightly but definitely lower bone masses at all skeletal sites and at all pubertal stages than late mature girls, whereas the average bone mass formation from the onset of puberty to menarche is similar in both groups; (3) girls with a slow rate of pubertal maturation have lower bone mass values 2 years after the onset of puberty, but at menarche bone mass is similar compared with fast maturers; and (4) it cannot be confirmed that there is an effect of menarcheal age on bone mass values at menarche.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)774-81
Number of pages8
JournalBone and mineral
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2001


  • Absorptiometry, Photon
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Anthropometry
  • Body Height
  • Bone Density/physiology
  • Bone and Bones/diagnostic imaging
  • Breast/growth & development
  • Cohort Studies
  • European Continental Ancestry Group
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Menarche/physiology
  • Osteogenesis/physiology
  • Osteoporosis/epidemiology
  • Puberty/physiology
  • Risk

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