Could I still grow a bit more at age 18?

Question:

I’m in Tanner stage 3.9 or 4.0, I’m 18 years old and I have a 16 bone age. I’m 5 feet 9 inches. Can I reach 5 feet 10 inches or 11 inches? All my family is tall, and I still look young for my age.

Answer:

Boys in stage 4 grow 1 to 3 inches during that stage. A bone age of 16 is at the beginning of stage 5, which means you have reached your adult height. While there can be errors in the bone age assessment, it is probably more accurate than your self-assessment. Since I can’t see you, I can say why your self-assessment was so much different from your bone age reading.

Question:

I had a 14 bone age when I was 16. I started puberty at 16 or 16.5 years old. My doctor said I had much growth left so I supposed that at 18 I would have a 16 bone age. I could be wrong. What do you think?

Since then I grew 15 cm (6 inches) and still, everybody says that I look 16 and say that I can reach 5 feet 10 inches or 11 inches. What do you think?

I’m asking because my father and mother had late puberty too — my dad at 16 and my mother at 14.

Thanks šŸ™‚ 

Answer:

My difficulty is that your terms and data don’t match up You say you started puberty (the point in which you started to change from a boy to a man) at the age of 16. But you said your bone age at that time was 14, which would place you at the end of stage 3 or the beginning of stage 4. If you had just started puberty, you would have a bone age of 11.

Bone age and physical age don’t line up most of the time. Bone age is basically the average age of boys having this particular point in development. See What is the difference between bone age and a Tanner Stage?

Bone age numbers can be off by a year. If I assume that your bone age of 14 really was 13 when you saw the doctor, then you were at the end of stage 2 and just about to enter the stage of rapid growth. Each stage lasts about 2 years, which would mean you are currently at the start of stage 4, which matches your self-assessment. This matches the fact you grew fairly rapidly during the last two years. That would mean you have about 1 to 3 more inches to grow before you stop gaining height.

But please understand that this is just guesswork on my part. I don’t have the advantage of seeing you like your doctor is able to see you. His assessment would be the most accurate.

Question:

Thanks for the answer!

If this helps, at 16 I had a 6/7 testicle size! I really only wanted to reach 178 to 180 cm ( 5 feet 10 inches or 11 inches) and since I can grow 1 to 3 inches, I think that’s possible! 

Answer:

A 6 to 7 ml testicle size at 16 would confirm that you were at late stage 2 or early stage 3 at that point. Thus, I would expect you to be at early stage 4 now and it is likely that you have 1 to 3 more inches left to grow.

Response:

Thanks for your answer!