What is Growth Hormone?

One of the two hormones that are most effective on growth is growth and the other is thyroid hormone. The growth hormone is secreted by the pituitary gland in the brain region. Growth hormone levels show increases and decreases during the day; most nights are secreted asleep. Sleep, exercise, physical stress, adolescence, hunger and fall in blood sugar stimulate the secretion of growth hormone.

The main biological effect of growth hormone is to increase the height growth. It increases bone thickness, soft tissue (muscle) growth, protein production, fatty acid release, insulin resistance and blood sugar levels. The enlarging effects of growth hormone are mediated by insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1). IGF-1 is mainly produced in the liver and in growth plates in the extremities of long bones. Growth hormone and nutritional status determine the level of circulating IGF-1; In cases of growth hormone deficiency and nutritional deficiency, the level of IGF-1 decreases and the growth slows down.

What are the main symptoms of growth hormone deficiency?

The most important and often only manifestation of growth hormone deficiency is growth retardation and short stature in children. Dwarfism occurs in severe cases; The body structure is small in proportion. Growth in congenital growth hormone deficiencies may deteriorate from infancy. Even if the age grows, the body remains small and infant; the forehead is prominent, the face bones, nose and chin are small. Teeth may be late. Hands - the feet are small. Bone development remains back and adolescence is delayed. Intelligence is usually normal.

What is the treatment of growth hormone deficiency in the child?

Preparations containing growth hormone are available. These drugs are available in the form of an injection. It is administered at appropriate doses under the skin every night before bedtime. For this, special education is provided to families. Families make injections at home. Growth hormone injections can be easily applied at home. In children with growth hormone deficiency, treatment is maintained until growth plates are closed.

Is there a risk of using growth hormone?

Giving growth hormone to a child with a growth hormone deficiency is a replacement therapy. In other words, there is deficiency and this is normalized by external hormones. There is no serious risk in this respect. The growth of the child under treatment and the level of IGF-1 hormone are closely monitored and appropriate dose adjustments are made and the negative effects of insufficient or over-treatment are avoided. On the other hand, drug use may have some side effects. Pain, swelling, edema, headache due to increased intracranial pressure, sleep disorders are among these side effects. These are rare and may require a short interruption of the drug. It's usually not a problem when you start again. The use of high doses of the drug can lead to insulin resistance and high blood sugar levels. These are temporary problems and corrected by appropriate dose adjustment.

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