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How Does Replacement Therapy Work in Adults with Pronounced Growth Hormone Deficiency

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Growth hormone deficiency in adults is distinguishable in terms of biochemistry, as well as clinically. With the breakthroughs of genetic engineering, there is currently safe and extensive provision of replacement therapy for people with growth hormone deficit. Based on data and doctors who have suggested replacement therapy, many patients’ lives completely changed after getting replacement therapy. Growth hormone replacement greatly improved even the most significant growth hormone deficiency symptoms, such as decreased work capacity and energy, changes in the body’s composition, and poor psychological health. Here’s how replacement therapy works in adults with pronounced growth hormone deficiency.

Body composition

One of the most prominent symptoms of this kind of therapy is the changes in body mass. Replacement therapy greatly enhances patients’ exercise capacity and strengthens their muscles. One study showed that patients who were on treatment exhibited ameliorated muscle strength that even protected them from reducing muscular strength that comes with aging. Growth hormone replacement therapy works on decreasing fat mass and increasing lean mass instead. Many reports exhibited that the new fat and lean mass levels were maintained for around 15 years before aging’s adverse effects started showing. Data from one study showed that the therapy’s discontinuation for only four months after having completed above three years of treatment resulted in increased visceral and abdominal fat and a decrease in thigh muscle mass. The overall changes heavily depend on the dosages, though. Low dosages are less effective than high dosages. 

Bone structure

Another negative symptom that growth hormone deficiency is characterized by is the decreased bone mineral density and increased risk of fractures. This therapy aims to increase bone mineral density and improve maximal bone procurement in adults with growth hormone deficiency. The specialists involved in curating the humatrope grow hormone explain that most patients exhibit an increase of 4 to 10% of bone mineral density after several months of treatment. Some results showed an increase in lumbar spine bone mineral density after seven years of treatment which is stabilized during continuing therapy in the long-term. Factors that affect the significance of the bone mineral density results are age, gender, dosage, and treatment duration. 

Quality of life

Adults who suffer from growth hormone deficiency often have a poor quality of life. This is because of their inability to complete many tasks, as well as their frequent fatigue. The majority of patients who are being treated by replacement therapy experience an improved quality of life during the first year of treatment. These results are typically sustainable and are medium- and even long-term. 

Cardiovascular risk 

Growth hormone deficiency hinders patients’ cardiovascular health substantially. Adults who suffer from it generally have a lowered cardiac output and ventricular mass. It also obstructs their capacity to exercise and impairs systolic and diastolic function. This deficiency places significant risks on endothelial function and lipid profile and may result in cardiovascular inflammation. Many people who follow growth hormone replacement therapy exhibit a rise in high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, along with a drop in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and total cholesterol. A study showed that after using the treatment for above three years and withdrawing for four months, they experienced elevated low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and total cholesterol levels. Besides, patients who were being treated showed a decreased risk of low-grade inflammation and a reduced thickness of the carotid intima-media, which can be a sign of coronary disease if enlarged. 


Many people believe that growth hormone replacement therapy will not work as efficiently as patients start aging. However, many studies showed that as patients grow older, the treatment effects do not necessarily diminish. Normally, any person produces fewer growth hormones as they age, so the required dosages for elders are lower. A study that was carried out for patients above 60 years of age showed that growth hormone replacement therapy decreased low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and total cholesterol without affecting triglyceride or high-density lipoprotein levels. It did not negatively affect bone mineral density, body mass index, and blood pressure either, yet exhibited an increase in lean body mass and a decrease in fat body mass. It also showed great signs of improved quality of life. 


Suffering from a growth hormone deficiency has many significant risk factors on one’s health. It also disrupts a person’s quality of life as it drastically decreases their energy, work, and exercise capacity and leaves them constantly tired. However, with enhanced modern-day genetic technologies, replacement therapy offers the ultimate treatment solution. 

Tommy Williamson did his degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. He has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.

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