Growth and pubertal development in patients with meningomyelocele: A retrospective analysis

R. Trollmann*, H. G. Dörr, E. Strehl, A. Katalinic, R. Beyer, D. Wenzel

*Corresponding author for this work
37 Citations (Scopus)


Our retrospective analysis of growth and pubertal development includes 109 children and adults with meningomyelocele (MMC) (52 M, 57 F) aged 3.2-21.0 years (median 8.9 years). Anthropometric data, growth-retarding factors and data on pubertal development were analysed in comparison to the normal population using standards from Prader et al. (1). The results (mean ± SD) were as follows. Fifty patients (46.8%) had short stature (height SDS for chronological age (SDS CA) < -2). The supine length was influenced by the level of the lesion (height SDS CA: ≥ L2 -3.13 ± 1.62, ≤ S2 -0.46 ± 1.27), ambulatory status, skeletal deformities and pubertal stage. The mean adult height (n = 15, age 16.1-21.0 years) measured 141.3 cm for women (height SDS CA -3.83 ± 1.79) and 159.2 cm for men (height SDS CA -2.27 ± 1.81). In 82.6% of the subjects (n = 90), arm spans were within the normal range. Reduced arm spans (SDS < -2) as found in 19 patients (17.4%) with short stature (mean height SDS CA -3.29 ± 1.29) may be caused by factors other than neurological lesions and skeletal deformities, and require further endocrinological studies. Out of 27 pubertal patients, central precocious puberty was diagnosed in five girls. The stages of puberty in MMC girls developed earlier than expected for the age-related group.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Paediatrica, International Journal of Paediatrics
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)76-80
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 01.01.1996


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