Has your child developed early pubic or underarm hair? Premature pubarche (PP) is when girls under 8 and boys under 9 have premature development of pubic and/or axillary hair. It tends to happen more in girls. It is different from “precocious puberty” because it does not include breast buds or testicular development and there usually isn’t increased linear growth (height). One thing to note, PP is a diagnosis of exclusion – meaning we have to rule out other possibilities first, and once that is done, PP is considered a normal variation of development.
What could it mean for the patient long term? PP has been associated with a higher risk of a variety of conditions including obesity, insulin resistance, PCOS, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular issues; and mental health issues (even during childhood).
If one has PP then we can start helping that child to avoid these potential health issues with diet and lifestyle changes, reducing chemical exposures, appropriate supplementation, monitoring and providing education for the child and the family.
Taking care of kids is a passion of mine. If you have concerns about your child’s development, please reach out for an appointment.