Don’t be afraid of “hormones”, correctly understand growth hormone

  1. Is growth hormone a hormone? What is the difference from a normal hormone?

A: Many parents talk about “hormonal” discoloration. When they mention hormones, they think of side effects such as body weight gain, osteoporosis, liver and kidney toxicity, and immediately say they refuse treatment or give up treatment because they think that “growth hormone is a hormone, and children cannot use”. In fact, there are many types of hormones in the human body, and people commonly refer to “hormones” as glucocorticoids and sex hormones.

   Glucocorticoid is a steroid hormone secreted by the adrenal cortex. Under normal physiological conditions, it has an important regulatory effect on the metabolism of nutrients in the body and the functions of various organs, and is one of the hormones necessary to maintain life. Such drugs have strong anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic and immunosuppressive effects. However, when some diseases must be treated with glucocorticoids for a long time, they will slow down growth, and long-term use will have the side effects of centripetal obesity.

  Sex hormones are several steroid hormones secreted by the gonads and adrenal cortex. The testes mainly secrete testosterone, the ovaries mainly secrete estradiol and progesterone, and the adrenal cortex mainly secrete dehydroisoandrosone. If a large dose or a long duration of intake of foods or drugs containing sex hormones, it may cause early development of reproductive organs and sexual characteristics.

Although growth hormone is also called “hormone”, it is completely different from glucocorticoids and sex hormones in terms of source, chemical structure, physiological and pharmacological effects, and does not produce glucocorticoids or sex hormone-like side effects.

   So what exactly is growth hormone?

   Growth Hormone (Human Growth Hormone, hGH) is a peptide hormone secreted by the anterior pituitary gland of the human body, consisting of 191 amino acids. Growth hormone stimulates liver and other tissues to produce insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) to exert its physiological functions, promote bone growth, promote body anabolism and protein synthesis, promote lipolysis, inhibit glucose utilization and increase blood sugar. During puberty, growth hormone, under the synergistic effect of sex hormones, further causes rapid height growth.

   2. Will the growth hormone inhibit the child’s own secretory function?

   Answer: It will not affect. The secretion of growth hormone is related to the hypothalamic-pituitary growth axis. Growth hormone replacement therapy does not affect the function of the hypothalamic-pituitary growth axis.

   3. Growth hormone is a “hormone”, will it harm children’s health?

   Answer: What we usually call “hormones” generally refers to glucocorticoids, and long-term use will increase the weight of children. However, growth hormone is completely different from glucocorticoid in terms of physiological function, secretion and regulation. For children, the role of growth hormone is to promote the linear growth of bones and make the body grow taller. In addition, it can also promote protein synthesis and accelerate fat breakdown. It is safe to use growth hormone for treatment under the guidance of a doctor.

   4. Will growth hormone treatment make children gain weight?

   Answer: In general, growth hormone will not cause children to be obese. If children get fat, it may be related to excessive nutrient intake. It is recommended to do more vertical jumping exercises, which is not only beneficial for weight control, but also beneficial for height development.

   5. Do girls with short stature use growth hormone therapy to cause infertility?

   Answer: At present, there is no data showing that it will lead to infertility. On the contrary, relevant medical research has confirmed that growth hormone can be used as an adjuvant treatment for certain infertility.

   6. Does growth hormone cause diabetes?

   Answer: Growth hormone does not cause diabetes. Growth hormone can cause a transient increase in blood sugar. Patients with a family history of diabetes need to be highly cautious. They need to have their blood sugar checked before treatment. If you use growth hormone, you need to do regular blood sugar testing.

   7. Will growth hormone treatment cause precocious puberty? Make puberty come early?

   Answer: Growth hormone treatment does not cause precocious puberty. The mechanism of growth hormone is to promote linear growth of the epiphysis, and only sex hormones promote sexual development. Growth hormone therapy does not advance puberty.

   8. Will growth hormone treatment cause tumors?

Answer: I have done a lot of medical research abroad, and the medical literature suggests that the incidence of tumors after growth hormone treatment is two to 100,000 to 100,000, which is basically the same as the normal population. There is no obvious difference, indicating that growth hormone treatment will not cause tumors. .

   9. Will growth hormone make hands and feet bigger?

   Answer: Generally speaking, if the child’s bone age is young and the treatment is performed according to the doctor’s recommended dosage, there will be no phenomenon of enlarged hands and feet. If the epiphysis is nearly closed when the child begins growth hormone treatment, the application dose of growth hormone is large, and the hands and feet may become larger, but this will not bring life danger, and will only have a certain impact on the appearance of the appearance.

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