Get access

Anogenital Distances in Newborns and Children from Spain and Greece: Predictors, Tracking and Reliability

Authors

  • Eleni Papadopoulou,

    1. Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Barcelona, Spain
    2. IMIM (Hospital del Mar Research Institute), Barcelona, Spain
    3. Department of Experimental and Health Sciences, Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, Spain
    4. National School of Public Health, Athens, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Marina Vafeiadi,

    1. Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Barcelona, Spain
    2. IMIM (Hospital del Mar Research Institute), Barcelona, Spain
    3. Department of Experimental and Health Sciences, Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, Spain
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Silvia Agramunt,

    1. Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Barcelona, Spain
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Xavier Basagaña,

    1. Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Barcelona, Spain
    2. IMIM (Hospital del Mar Research Institute), Barcelona, Spain
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Kleopatra Mathianaki,

    1. Department of Social Medicine, Medical School, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Polykseni Karakosta,

    1. Department of Social Medicine, Medical School, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Arianna Spanaki,

    1. Department of Social Medicine, Medical School, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Antonis Koutis,

    1. Department of Social Medicine, Medical School, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Leda Chatzi,

    1. Department of Social Medicine, Medical School, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Martine Vrijheid,

    1. Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Barcelona, Spain
    2. IMIM (Hospital del Mar Research Institute), Barcelona, Spain
    3. CIBER Epidemiologia y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Barcelona, Spain
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Manolis Kogevinas

    Corresponding author
    1. IMIM (Hospital del Mar Research Institute), Barcelona, Spain
    2. CIBER Epidemiologia y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Barcelona, Spain
    3. National School of Public Health, Athens, Greece
    • Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Barcelona, Spain
    Search for more papers by this author

Correspondence:

Manolis Kogevinas, Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Doctor Aiguader, 88, 08003 Barcelona, Spain.

E-mail: kogevinas@creal.cat

Abstract

Background

Anogenital distance has been associated with prenatal exposure to chemicals with anti-androgenic effects. There are limited data in humans concerning descriptive patterns, predictors, and the reliability of measurement of anogenital distances. We examined anogenital distance measurements and their predictors in males and females and further estimated the reliability of these measurements.

Methods

Anogenital distances were measured in repeated time periods among 352 newborns and 732 young children in two cohorts, one in Crete, Greece and one in Barcelona, Spain. Mixed effect models were used to estimate the between-children, between- and within-examiners variance, as well as the reliability coefficients.

Results

Genitalia distances were longer in males than in females. Anogenital distances in both sexes increased rapidly from birth to 12 months, while the additional increase during the second year was small. Birthweight was associated with an increase of 1.9 mm/kg [95% CI 0.1, 3.8] (CI, confidence interval) in the anogenital distance measured from the anus to anterior base of the penis in newborn males, 2.9 mm/kg [95% CI 1.8, 3.9] in anoclitoral distance and 1.0 mm/kg [95% CI 0.0, 2.0] in anofourchettal distance in newborn females, after adjustment for gestational age. In children, body weight was the main predictor of all genitalia measurements. Moreover, anogenital distances at birth were associated with the corresponding distances at early childhood. High reliability coefficients (>90%) were found for all anogenital distances measurements in males and females.

Conclusions

Anogenital distances are strongly related to gestational age and birthweight and later, to growth. They track through early life and are highly reliable measures in both sexes.

Get access to the full text of this article

Ancillary