Growth hormone treatment in prepubertal children with celiac disease and growth hormone deficiency

Diletta Giovenale, Cristina Meazza, Giuliana M. Cardinale, Edorado Farinelli, Costanzo Mastrangelo, Beatrice Messini, Giuseppe Citro, Maurizio Del Vecchio, Salvatore Di Maio, Ilaria Possenti, Mauro Bozzola

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the growth response to growth hormone (GH) replacement therapy during a gluten-free diet in patients with celiac disease (CD) associated with GH deficiency (GHD). PATIENTS AND METHODS: A total of 14 prepubertal children affected by CD and GHD with no catch-up growth after ≥12 months of gluten-free diet and a reversion to seronegativity for antiendomysium antibodies and 10 age-matched prepubertal children with idiopathic GHD (IGHD) entered the study. All of the patients were treated with the same GH dosage (0.25 mg/kg subcutaneously each week). Height, growth rate, and body mass index were measured at the time of diagnosis of CD, at the time of endocrinological evaluation, and after the first, second, and third year of GH replacement therapy. RESULTS: Growth rate strikingly increased (P <0.005) during the first year of therapy in a similar way in subjects with CD/GHD and IGHD (from a median standard deviation score [SDS] of -2.34 to an SDS of 3.25 and from an SDS of -1.29 to an SDS of 2.79, respectively). During the second and third years of GH treatment, the growth rate tended to decrease but the values at the third year were always positive (CD/GHD, median SDS, 1.10; IGHD, median SDS, 0.11), indicating continued catch-up growth. CONCLUSIONS: In patients with CD with GH deficiency confirmed after ≥12 months of gluten-free diet, GH replacement therapy should be started to allow complete catch-up growth in children. In addition, the effect of GH treatment in patients who comply with a gluten-free diet seems to be comparable to that observed in children with IGHD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-437
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007


  • Celiac disease
  • Gluten
  • Growth hormone deficiency
  • Growth hormone treatment
  • Growth rate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology
  • Histology
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Growth hormone treatment in prepubertal children with celiac disease and growth hormone deficiency'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this