High-dose growth hormone treatment of short children born small for gestational age

Francis De Zegher, Marc Maes, Sharron E. Gargosky, Claudine Heinrichs, Marc V.L. Du Caju, Geneviève Thiry, Jean De Schepper, Margareta Craen, Luc Breysem, Annika Löfström, Peter Jönsson, Jean Pierre Bourguignon, Paul Malvaux, Ron G. Rosenfeld

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104 Scopus citations


The effect of GH administration was evaluated over 2 yr in 50 short, prepubertal, non-GH deficient children born small for gestational age, who had been randomly allocated to a group receiving no treatment or daily sc GH treatment at a dose of 0.2 or 0.3 IU/kg. At the start of the study, mean age was 5.2 yr, bone age was 4.0 yr, height SDS was -3.5, height velocity SDS was -0.8, weight SDS was -2.7, and body mass index SDS was -1.9. Catch-up growth was observed in none of the untreated and all of the treated children. The response to GH treatment included a near doubling of growth velocity and of weight gain and a mean height increment of more than 2 SDS. GH treatment was associated with a distinct acceleration of bone maturation. The differences between the growth responses evoked by the two GH doses were minor. The prepubertal GH-induced catch-up growth was associated with elevated serum concentrations of insulin, insulin-like growth factor-I, insulin-like growth factor binding protein-3, and osteocalcin, whereas insulin-like growth factor-II levels remained unaltered. GH treatment was well tolerated. In conclusion, high-dose GH administration over 2 yr is emerging as a potential therapy to increase the short stature that results from insufficient catch- up growth in young children born small for gestational age. The long-term impact of this approach remains to be delineated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1887-1892
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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