Growth hormone may be halted in puberty for some
In children previously diagnosed with a deficiency in growth hormone (GH), retesting of GH levels during puberty—and withdrawal of growth hormone therapy if appropriate—does not diminish adult height, a study shows.
“GH treatment can be safely interrupted, in subjects with non-severe GH deficiency, at mid-puberty if GH secretion has proved to be normal,” Dr. Stefano Zucchini from the University of Bologna, Italy told Reuters Health.
He and colleagues retested 69 individuals with GH deficiency at puberty and, if found normalized, left them untreated until the end of growth. Those with persistent GH deficiency continued GH treatment.
At retesting, 44 (63.7 percent) of the subjects had persistent GH deficiency, whereas the others had normal GH secretion.
“The withdrawal of GH therapy in these subjects after retesting was not associated with a catch down growth, and they obtained an adult height similar to those obtained by the GH deficient subjects treated until adult height,” the investigators report.
SOURCE: Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, November 2006.
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