Vol 59, No 6 (2008)
Review paper
Published online: 2008-10-30

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Central precocious puberty

Robert Krysiak, Bogdan Marek, Bogusław Okopień
Endokrynol Pol 2008;59(6):530-540.


Central precocious puberty, defined as the onset of puberty before the age 8 years in girls and 9 years in boys, results from a premature activation of gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons in the hypothalamus. This condition is characterised by early pubertal changes, acceleration of growth velocity, and rapid bone maturation that often result in reduced adult height. It may be either idiopathic or associated with hypothalamic hamartoma, brain neoplasms, numerous non-cancerous disorders of the central nervous system and treatment of peripheral precocious puberty. The goal of the initial assessment of children is to exclude the presence of all these organic disorders. The diagnosis should include detailed anamnesis and clinical examination, measurement of pituitary and sex hormones, assessment of bone age, and imaging of the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, abdomen, pelvis and gonads. The treatment of choice are gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists. In this paper, we review the current views on the etiopathogenesis, clinical presentation, diagnosis and management of central precocious puberty.

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