6. Invited Paper

Objectives: To understand the difference in growth pattern of different body dimensions among boys and girls during pre-pubertal and post-pubertal span of life.

Material and Method: A cross-sectional survey was conducted on 612 individual consisting of 312 girls and 300 boys of 5 to 18 years of age; who were recruited from a central Indian town (Sagar). They were measured for ten anthropometric traits viz. stature, sitting height, Body weight, head length, head breadth, head circumference, upper arm circumference, chest circumference, hip circumference and waist circumference.

Results: The boys and girls grow almost with same rate upto puberty. During early span of life girls are insignificantly taller and heavier than boys but after puberty the boys become significantly taller and heavier as well as they have overall larger body dimensions than the girls. On the basis of regression analysis, it was found that the growth pattern of height, body weight sitting height, upper arm circumference and head circumference was faster among girls as compared to boys during prepuberty; whereas, the growth pattern of head length, head breadth and circumferences like chest, waist and hip circumference were faster among the boys. On the contrary, during puberty and after puberty the growth of all above body dimensions and body mass is faster among boys as compared to girls.

Conclusion: There is almost no sexual dimorphism in growth pattern of boys and girls upto puberty. After puberty, the boys exceed than girls and sexual dimorphism is apparent.

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