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    There is an ongoing discussion whether high doses of growth hormone (GH) may lead to cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, we studied the relationships between GH treatment and carotid intima-media thickness (cIMT), which is predictive of the development of atherosclerosis. We measured cIMT in 38 children with supraphysiological doses of GH (mean age 10.9 ± 2.2 years; 47% male; GH indication: small for gestational age, n = 31; Turner syndrome, n = 5; SHOX deficiency, n = 2) and in 38 age- and gender-matched healthy children without GH treatment. Furthermore, we examined cIMT in 61 children with physiological doses of GH (mean age 12.0 ± 3.1 years; 64% male; GH indication: GH deficiency) and in 61 age- and gender-matched healthy children without GH treatment. Moreover, we analyzed blood pressure, lipids, HbA1c, IGF-1, and IGFBP-3 in children treated with GH. The cIMT levels did not differ significantly between children with and without GH treatment either in high-dose GH treatment or in physiological GH doses. In backwards linear regression analyses, cIMT was significantly related to HbA1c, but not to age, gender, BMI, pubertal stage, indication of GH treatment, duration or doses of GH treatment, IGF-1, IGFBP-3, or to any cardiovascular risk factor. We found no evidence that GH treatment is associated with changes in cIMT.


    Caroline Knop, Barbara Wolters, Nina Lass, Rainer Wunsch, Thomas Reinehr. Carotid intima-media thickness in children treated with growth hormone. Journal of pediatric endocrinology & metabolism : JPEM. 2015 Sep;28(9-10):985-91

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    PMID: 25210755

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