Evidence for a downward secular trend in age of menarche in a rural Gambian population


Prentice, S; Fulford, AJ; Jarjou, LMA; Goldberg, GR; Prentice, A; (2010) Evidence for a downward secular trend in age of menarche in a rural Gambian population. Annals of human biology, 37 (5). pp. 717-721. ISSN 0301-4460 DOI: https://doi.org/10.3109/03014461003727606

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Abstract

Menarcheal age is a key indicator of female maturity and development. Studies in many countries have reported a downward secular trend in age of menarche over the past century. This study presents data gained using the 'status quo' method and interval regression to estimate median menarcheal age of girls in a rural Gambian community. Cross-sectional studies carried out in 1989, 2000 and 2008 revealed a median menarcheal age of 16.06 (95% CI 15.67-16.45), 15.03 (95% CI 14.76-15.30) and 14.90 (95% CI 14.52-15.28), respectively. The average rate of decline of median age of menarche was amongst the most rapid yet reported, at 0.65 years of age per decade (p < 0.00001). There was no evidence for a change in the rate of decline over the two decades studied. These results probably reflect ongoing socio-economic development within the region.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Menarche, age, Gambia, secular trend, interval regression, ADOLESCENT GIRLS, HYPOTHESIS, AFRICA
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health > Dept of Population Health (2012- ) > Dept of Nutrition and Public Health Interventions Research (2003-2012)
Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health > Dept of Population Health (2012- )
Research Centre: Centre for Global Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs)
PubMed ID: 20465526
Web of Science ID: 282900800009
URI: http://researchonline.lshtm.ac.uk/id/eprint/2358

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