Basal and stimulated serum growth hormone concentrations in inflammatory bowel disease.
Patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) manifest growth failure which may antecede abdominal symptoms by some years. Eight of ten children with documented IBD had records of decreasing growth velocities. Investigation of growth hormone reserves showed excessive rather than impaired responses. Mean basal GH level was 6.2 +/- 0.75 (SEM) ng/ml. During sleep, the mean GH level rose to 26.0 +/- 4.7 ng/ml and following propranolol-glucagon stimulation, to 46.0 +/- 4.5 ng/ml. All values were significantly higher than levels obtained in a control population of 25 children investigated for short stature who were not GH deficient. The mean peak GH response following insulin in the IBD group (10.8 +/- 3.8 ng/ml), however, did not differ from the mean peak response in the control group (13.5 +/- 3.3 ng/ml). Growth failure in patients with IBD is not the result of GH deficiency and is not an irreversible phenomenon. On the contrary, judicious use of glucocorticoids aimed at the control of the disease usually produces compensatory growth acceleration ("catch-up growth").
Tenore, A; Berman, WF; Parks, JS; Bongiovanni, AM
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