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Revista argentina de endocrinología y metabolismo

On-line version ISSN 1851-3034


MARTINEZ, Alicia et al. Gonadal function in children and adolescents born with restriction of intrauterine growth. Rev. argent. endocrinol. metab. [online]. 2017, vol.54, n.4, pp.196-203. ISSN 1851-3034.

Low birth weight due to intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) is associated with an increased risk of obesity, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes during postnatal life. Exposure to an unfavourable intrauterine environment in critical phases of development may have a deleterious effect on the forming gonad. The objective was to carry out a bibliographic review and update on the possible association between IUGR and alterations of gonadal function in children and adolescents of both sexes. To facilitate the update, this was divided into stages: 1, prenatal; 2, postnatal and pre-pubertal; 3, puberal, and 4, adult. Most children born preterm or with low birth weight make a normal transition from childhood to adulthood with respect to reproductive health. However, cryptorchidism, hypospadias, testicular cancer and lower fertility could be observed in boys, and early puberty and menarche, hyperandrogenism and polycystic ovarian syndrome in girls. However, the data are controversial, and further studies are needed to clarify the relationship between IUGR and pituitary gonadal function.

Keywords : Intrauterine growth restriction; Small for gestational age; Gonadal function; Early puberty; Hypospadias.

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