Personalized approach to growth hormone replacement in adults

Christa C. van Bunderen, Camilla Glad, Gudmundur Johannsson, Daniel S. Olsson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Growth hormone (GH) deficiency (GHD) in adults is well-characterized and includes abnormal body composition, reduced bone mass, an adverse cardiovascular risk profile, and impaired quality of life. In the early 1990s, it was also shown that patients with hypopituitarism without GH replacement therapy (GHRT) had excess mortality.Today, GHRT has been shown to decrease or reverse the negative effects of GHD. In addition, recent papers have shown that mortality and morbidity are approaching normal in hypopituitary patients with GHD who receive modern endocrine therapy including GHRT. Since the first dose-finding studies, it has been clear that efficacy and side effects differ substantially between patients. Many factors have been suggested as affecting responsiveness, such as sex, age, age at GHD onset, adherence, and GH receptor polymorphisms, with sex and sex steroid replacement having the greatest impact. Therefore, the individual tailoring of GH dose is of great importance to achieve sufficient efficacy without side effects. One group that stands out is women receiving oral estrogen replacement, who needs the highest dose. Serum insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) is still the most used biochemical biomarker for GH dose titration, although the best serum IGF-1 target is still debated. Patients with GHD due to acromegaly, Cushing’s disease, or craniopharyngioma experience similar effects from GHRT as others.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)592-600
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019

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