Growth arrest lines

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Growth arrest lines
Other namesHarris lines
Growth arrest lines in a child with an underlying bone disease
SpecialtyOrthopedics, radiology

Growth arrest lines, also known as Harris lines, are lines of increased bone density that represent the position of the growth plate at the time of insult to the organism and formed on long bones due to growth arrest. They are only visible by radiograph or in cross-section. The age at which the lines were formed can be estimated from a radiograph. Harris lines are often discussed as a result of juvenile malnutrition, disease or trauma. Other studies suggest a reconsideration of Harris lines as more of a result of normal growth and growth spurts, rather than a pure outcome of nutritional or pathologic stress.[1] The term is named after Henry Albert Harris, 1886-1968, professor for anatomy at the University of Cambridge.


  1. ^ Papageorgopoulou C, Suter SK, Rühli FJ, Siegmund F (2011). "Harris lines revisited: prevalence, comorbidities, and possible etiologies". Am J Hum Biol. 23 (3): 381–91. doi:10.1002/ajhb.21155. PMID 21387459.

Further reading[edit]

  • Tim D. White, 2001. Human Osteology, 2nd Edition. Academic Press, San Diego.
  • Chr. Papageorgopoulou, S. K. Suter, F. J. Rühli, F. Siegmund: Harris lines revisited: Prevalence, co-morbidities and possible aetiologies. American Journal of Human Biology 23(3), 2011, S. 381-391. DOI:10.1002/ajhb.21155
  • S. Suter, M. Harders, Chr. Papageorgopoulou, G. Kuhn, G. Szekely, F. J. Rühli: Technical note: Standardized and semiautomated Harris lines detection. American Journal of Physical Anthropololy 137, 2008, S. 362–366.
  • M. P. Alfonso-Durruty: Experimental assessment of nutrition and bone growth's velocity effects on Harris lines formation. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 145(2), 2011, S. 169-180. DOI:10.1002/ajpa.21480