Medical College of Wisconsin
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Age of thelarche and menarche in contemporary US females: a cross-sectional analysis. J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab 2014 Jan;27(1-2):47-51 PMID: 23959659 PMCID: PMC4137967

Pubmed ID





AIM: A recent secular trend towards earlier thelarche has been suggested. The aim of this study is to examine normative ages of thelarche and menarche in contemporary US females.

METHODS: Trained physicians documented Tanner breast stage by observation in a cross-sectional cohort. Age of menarche was self-reported. The subjects were healthy female children and adolescents. The mean age of thelarche was determined by probit analysis and the mean age of menarche was determined by using a normal time-to-event model.

RESULTS: Mean age of thelarche was 9.7 years among 610 females aged 3.0-17.9 years (70% non-Hispanic Caucasian (NHC), 14% African-Americans, 7% Hispanic, 9% "other"). The mean age of menarche was 12.8 years for NHC, with African-Americans having menarche 0.6 years earlier.

CONCLUSIONS: Thelarche occurred earlier than recently reported, while age of menarche remained unchanged, this supported a persistent secular trend towards earlier thelarche but stable age of menarche. This suggests that the observed thelarche is gonadotropin-independent or the tempo of pubertal advancement has slowed.

Author List

Cabrera SM, Bright GM, Frane JW, Blethen SL, Lee PA


Susanne M. Cabrera MD Assistant Professor in the Pediatrics department at Medical College of Wisconsin


2-s2.0-84893751226   27 Citations

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Age Factors
Cross-Sectional Studies
United States
jenkins-FCD Prod-310 bff9d975ec7f2d302586822146c2801dd4449aad