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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Changes and correlations in height from 7 to 69 years of age across the birth years of 1930 to 1989

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OBJECTIVES: The aims of this study were to describe changes in height during childhood and to investigate potential changes in the proportion of children attaining final height in childhood and in correlations between child and adult height across birth cohorts.

METHODS: We included 363 059 children (179 906 girls) from the Copenhagen School Health Records Register, who were born between 1930 and 1989, with height measurements at ages 7, 10, or 13 years. Linkages to data resources containing adult height values between ages 18 and 69 years were possible for a subpopulation of 96 133 individuals (23 051 women). Birth years were categorized as 1930 to 1939, 1940 to 1949, and 1950 to 1989. Descriptive height statistics were estimated by birth years and birth cohorts. Height correlations were examined using sex- and age-specific partial Pearson correlation analyses and meta-regression techniques.

RESULTS: Across 60 birth years, mean child heights at age 7 increased by 2.9 cm in girls and 3.0 cm in boys, and adult heights increased as well. The proportions of children attaining final height by age 13 remained low across the birth cohorts; nonetheless, there was a significant increase from 0.7% to 1.5% in girls only (P < .0001). Both child-child and child-adult height correlations were strong and remained relatively stable across birth cohorts.

CONCLUSIONS: Mean child and adult height increased during the study period, but the proportion of children attaining final height at age 13 remained low. Child-child and child-adult height correlations were largely unchanged across birth cohorts.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere23378
JournalAmerican journal of human biology : the official journal of the Human Biology Council
Volume32
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)e23378
ISSN1042-0533
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2020

ID: 58889906