Effects of recombinant growth hormone (GH) treatment on bone mineral density and body composition in adults with childhood onset growth hormone deficiency

A. Sartorio, S. Ortolani, A. Conti, R. Cherubini, E. Galbiati, G. Faglia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Lumbar spine, whole proximal femur and total body bone mineral density (BMD, g/cm 2) and the regional soft tissue composition were measured with dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (Hologic QDR 1000/W) in eight adults with childhood onset GHD, before and after 6 months of recombinant GH treatment (0.5 IU/kg/week). Data obtained from patients were compared with those recorded in an age and sex matched control group. Before treatment, lumbar (L2-L4) spine BMD (mean ± SD: 0.811 ± 0.159 g/cm 2), whole proximal femur BMD (0.739 ± 0.094 g/cm 2) and total body BMD (0.946 ± 0.087 g/cm 2) of patients were significantly (p <0.001, 0.01 and 0.001, respectively) lower than those recorded in an age- and sex-matched control group (1.077 ± 0.155 g/cm 2, 0.968 ± 0.166 g/cm 2 and 1.168 ± 0.058 g/cm 2, respectively), although three patients showed BMD values at the lower limit of the normal range. Mean lumbar spine BMD, whole proximal femur BMD and total body BMD did not significantly change alter 6 months' GH treatment (-1.4 ± 3.7%, +2.7 ± 3.7% and -1.1 ± 5.0% vs basal values, respectively). On the other hand, trochanteric subregion showed a significant 4.8 ± 5.3% increase (vs basal, p <0.05), while other hip subregions did not show significant changes. GH therapy caused marked effects on body composition; in fact, a significant decrease (p <0.01) of trunk fat (-25.2 ± 15.0%) and a marked increase (p <0.01) of limbs lean mass (+10.0 ± 5.3%), resulting in a significant (p <0.02) reduction (-16.5 ± 13.5%) of the axial to peripheral fat ratio (APFR), were clearly evident after six months of therapy. In conclusion, our study shows that six months of GH treatment do not exert relevant effects on the BMD of adults with childhood onset GHD. On the contrary, the effects of GH therapy on body composition are more marked, being clearly appreciable after six months of treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)524-529
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Endocrinological Investigation
Volume19
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1996

Keywords

  • Adulthood
  • Body composition
  • Bone density
  • GH
  • GH deficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology

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