10 August 2010

Study: Girls Entering Puberty Earlier

Study: Girls Entering Puberty Earlier:
The age of puberty is declining for girls, with more girls developing breasts by age 7 than in years past, according to a new study.

Ethnicity plays a role in earlier puberty, says researcher Frank M. Biro, MD, director of the division of adolescent medicine at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati. So does body composition.

'We found that girls who are African-American matured before whites, and that's been shown in several studies,' Biro tells WebMD. 'White girls are maturing earlier than they had before, compared to 20 years earlier.'

In his study of 1,239 girls, 10% of whites, 23% of African-Americans, and 15% of Hispanic girls had breast development indicating onset of puberty by age 7, Biro found.
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