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J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab. 2012;25(5-6):581-5.

Marked increase of final height by long-term aromatase inhibition in a boy with idiopathic short stature.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics and Adolescence Medicine, University Hospital, Freiburg, Germany.


Growth hormone (GH) is the most frequently used treatment in children with idiopathic short stature (ISS). Aromatase inhibitor (AI) therapy is still in an experimental state, and both final height (FH) and long-term efficacy data in ISS have not been published. We present a 14.5-year-old boy with ISS and a height of 142.7 cm [standard deviation score (SDS) -2.79]. Based on the baseline bone age (BA) of 13.5-14 years, his predicted adult height (PAH) by Bayley/Pinneau was 154 cm (SDS -3.77)-158.2 (SDS -3.15). After a 5-year letrozole monotherapy, FH was 169 cm (SDS -1.57) showing a height difference between PAH and FH from 10.8 to 15 cm. No permanent side effects of the medication have been observed. Both a transient occurrence and a spontaneous recovery of decreased bone mineral apparent density were seen, verified by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. Spinal magnetic resonance imaging revealed no vertebral abnormalities. All therapy might be an effective and low-cost alternative to the use of GH. Further controlled trials should prove efficacy and safety of long-term AI therapy in boys with ISS.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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