Puberty and Growth

Onset of puberty is overtly visible in females. Girls shoot up in height and have visible breast development. Peak height velocity is reached much earlier in girls than in boys. Menarche occurs after peak height velocity is over.

In contrast, the early signs of puberty in males are not visible to the public. It is not until the growth spurt that other outward signs such as the deepening of the voice become apparent.

Height and puberty

In both sexes, 20-25% of final adult height is credited to puberty.

Most females grow only an inch or two after the onset of menses. As a group, the final height of males is about 13 cm greater than that of females. This is important to remember when making height predictions based on the mid-parental height equation.

Body mass and puberty

About fifty percent of adult ideal weight is attributable to puberty. Both males and females start puberty at about 80% lean body mass. During puberty, females drop to 70-75% lean body mass and males increase to 90%. Males gain more muscle mass, and females gain more adipose tissue.

Quick Check: Puberty

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