Journal Article

The effect of recombinant human growth hormone treatment on bone and mineral metabolism in haemodialysis patients.

J Gram, T B Hansen, P B Jensen, J H Christensen, S Ladefoged and F B Pedersen

in Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation

Volume 13, issue 6, pages 1529-1534
Published in print June 1998 | ISSN: 0931-0509
Published online June 1998 | e-ISSN: 1460-2385 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ndt/13.6.1529
The effect of recombinant human growth hormone treatment on bone and mineral metabolism in haemodialysis patients.

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BACKGROUND: Uraemia and chronical haemodialysis are associated with an abnormal growth hormone (GH)-insulin-like growth factor (IGF) axis which may contribute to malnutrition and renal bone disease. Short-term studies have shown a beneficial effect of treatment with recombinant human growth hormone (rhGH) on nutritional status in patients on haemodialysis. In the present study, we evaluated the effect of rhGH on bone and mineral metabolism. METHODS: Twenty chronic malnourished patients on haemodialysis took part in a double-blind, placebo controlled trial with subcutaneous injections of rhGH (4 IU/m2/day) or placebo for 6 months. RESULTS: During rhGH treatment, serum IGF-1 increased 264 +/- 52% (mean +/- SEM) (P < 0.008). There were no significant changes in biochemical markers of mineral metabolism (serum ionized calcium, phosphate and parathyroid hormone). Among markers of bone metabolism, there was a significant increase in serum procollagen type I C-terminal propeptide (maximum 155 +/- 8%, P < 0.001) and no significant changes in serum alkaline phosphatase. Bone densitometry showed a significant decrease in whole body bone mineral content (95.7 +/- 1.2%) after 6 months treatment. The effects on the proximal femur were not significant. CONCLUSION: The effects of 6 months treatment with rhGH seen in this study are best explained by a GH- or IGF-1-induced increased bone turnover. Long-term treatment in larger cohorts followed by bone densitometry and, preferentially, bone histomorphometry are needed to evaluate whether this is a beneficial effect in haemodialysis patients.

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Subjects: Nephrology

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