Hormone-containing cosmetics may cause signs of early sexual development

P. A. Zimmerman, G. L. Francis, M. Poth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Exogenous hormone exposure can cause early sexual development, but only one report suggests that this may occur secondary to the use of hair-care products. This study evaluated the usage frequency and biological effects of hormone-containing hair-care products. We reviewed the records of 102 consecutive dependent children referred for evaluation of sexual precocity. Eight children (7.8%) were using these products. All eight were black (100%), compared to 57 (61%) of the 94 patients not using such products (p < 0.05). There was no significant difference between these two groups in mean age, sex distribution, height, height standard deviation score, bone age:chronologic age ratio, or serum estradiol level. We conclude that exposure to hormones in hair-care products may be more frequent than expected and should be considered in the differential diagnosis of early sexual development in children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)628-630
Number of pages3
JournalMilitary medicine
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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