We have developed a simple function for accurately estimating target height for use in evaluating growth and growth-promoting therapies in Taiwanese children. The heights of parents and their adult offspring born in the 1970s were determined in 1,229 healthy families who accompanied another family member to our pediatric clinic. We directly measured the heights of the population-based cohort of adult offspring. The heights of their parents were based on self-report. Both the parents and their offspring were healthy. The increases in height between the two generations were 1.49–3.19 cm for boys and 2.03–2.61 cm for girls. These increases lie between those reported for Chinese children in Hong Kong (4.2–4.8 cm) and children in Sweden (0.7–1.0 cm). Final height was underestimated using the corrected midparental height method and was overestimated using the final parental height model developed from Swedish data. We developed a new linear model by fitting our data: boy height = 79.3 0.56(midparental height); girl height = 35.2 0.76(midparental height). The intercept and slope of the model are similar to those reported for Swedish girls but not to those reported for Swedish boys. Use of the new equations derived from our data may increase the accuracy of estimates of target height in Taiwanese children. The intermediate position of our fairly representative Taiwanese sample in both final height and generational increases in final height may reflect an intermediate stage between the Swedes and Hong Kong Chinese in the secular trend of heights.
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Vol. 79 • No. 3