Children adopted from abroad are more likely than other children to be diagnosed with precocious puberty and are sometimes treated with drugs that delay pubertal development. Now, in an article in the journal Pediatrics, Dr Peter Hayes (History and Politics) has called the supposedly high risk of precocious puberty amongst internationally adopted children into question. Dr Hayes suggests that the risk of precocious puberty appears to be high because some adopted children are significantly older than their recorded age. This raises concerns over the treatment of these children.
‘International Adoption, “Early” Puberty, and Underrecorded Age’ will be published in Pediatrics in June 2013.
Peter’s previous articles on adoption include studies of international adoption, transracial adoption, and adoption in Korea. He is also co-author of the book Adoption in Japan.