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What are the sex differences between chronologic
Chronologic age does not take into account differences between
growing individuals relative to physical development. Children of
the same chronologic age can vary considerably in their stage of
maturational development. In general, girls chronologically develop
earlier than boys, but the exception to this is certainly commonly
seen. At the same stage of growth, a girl who is delayed
in development is often chronologically older than a boy who is
advanced in development. It is for this very basic physiologic
reason whereby every child demonstrates their own unique
pattern of development, that chronologic age should be avoided
for the purposes of evaluating the timing of growth and for the
rational timing of treatment.
Maturational age, as discussed in this context, can be considered
the common denominator between individuals regardless of gender
or chronologic age. Females and males who share the same
maturational age ( stage + level ) also demonstrate the same
percentages of total growth completed. Because of this fact,
maturational age provides the clinician with a clearer diagnostic
basis for treatment planning since the variability associated with
chronologic age have been eliminated.
The following chart demonstrates a comparison of both female and
male percentages of total growth completed at selected stages
and one level of maturation.
MAX. MAND. SMI MAX. MAND.
93.3 91.0 3 93.3 90.1
95.1 93.3 6 95.5 93.5
98.5 98.3 9 98.4 98.2
sample data represents selected stages ( SMIs ) at an average
level of maturation. Similar conformity of data representing both
sexes exists relative to all combinations of the 23 maturational stages
and the 14 maturational levels employed by the System of Skeletal
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