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Growth Hormone Deficiency

Moderate increase in neoplastic events in males following childhood growth hormone treatment

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There is a moderate increase in overall neoplastic events among individuals treated with recombinant human growth hormone (rhGH) during childhood for conditions such as growth hormone deficiency (GHD), small for gestational age (SGA), or idiopathic short stature (ISS), however, there is no significant association between rhGH treatment and malignant neoplastic events in early to mid-adulthood, according to a study. The study found that this increased risk of neoplastic events was primarily observed in male patients and was associated with longer treatment duration but not with the mean or cumulative dose of rhGH.

The study compared 3408 patients who received rhGH treatment with 50,036 age-, sex-, and region-matched controls randomly selected from the general population. Over a median follow-up period of 19.8 years, researchers collected data on neoplastic events and various covariates, including gestational age, birth weight, socioeconomic status, and height at the start of the study.

Results revealed a moderately increased hazard ratio (HR) for neoplastic events overall among patients compared to controls (HR 1.28, 95% CI: 1.12-1.46), with the association being significant for males (HR 1.39, 95% CI: 1.17-1.66) but not for females (HR 1.15, 95% CI: 0.94-1.41). However, no increased risk of malignant neoplasms was observed in patients compared to controls (HR 0.91, 95% CI: 0.66-1.26).

The study also noted that longer treatment duration was associated with an increased risk of neoplastic events, although there was no significant association between these events and the mean or cumulative dose of rhGH.

Reference
Tidblad A, Bottai M, Smedby KE, et al. Long-term risk of neoplastic events after childhood growth hormone treatment: a population-based cohort study in Sweden. Front Endocrinol (Lausanne). 2024;15:1360139. doi: 10.3389/fendo.2024.1360139. PMID: 38505755; PMCID: PMC10948557.

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