Why is the Growth hormone important?
Growth is one of the most fascinating phenomena in nature, and the growth hormone plays a vital role in it. This is also known as somatropin, and it is produced by the pituitary gland found in the brain. The growth hormone is responsible for increasing muscles and height, reducing body fat, and controlling the body’s metabolism.
Some people are born with a growth hormone deficiency, which leads to various health problems. Available in the market are many medications that contain growth hormones and manage to stabilize the somatropin level and avoid such complications.
The human growth hormone is a substance that regulates body growth and metabolism.
The pituitary gland, which is the size of a pea and is fundamental for regulating vital body functions and general wellbeing, is located in our brain’s base and it produces GH. The pituitary gland is also known as the master gland as it controls the activity of most hormone-secreting glands.
Human growth function helps children increase muscle mass, gain height, and decrease body fat. In both children and adults, this hormone helps control the body’s metabolism, which is how cells convert food into energy and produce other substances that the body needs.
Growth hormone deficiency and other health problems can be treated with a synthetic formulation of the growth hormone. Sometimes this hormone is used illegally for non-medical purposes, such as in highly competitive sports.
Do some adults need human growth hormone treatment?
Doctors may prescribe synthetic human GH for adults who have a growth hormone deficiency. The use of synthetic human GH as an additive may:
- Enhance bone density
- Increase muscle mass
- Increase exercise capacity
- Decrease body fat
Human growth hormone treatment is also approved to treat adults with growth hormone deficiency related to AIDS or HIV, which causes an uneven distribution of body fat.
What are the risks of human growth hormone treatment?
This treatment has several side effects such as:
- Joint and muscle pain
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Type 2 diabetes
- Increased insulin resistance
- Increased risk of certain types of cancer
- Swelling in the arms and legs (edema)
- For men, enlarged breast tissue (gynecomastia)
Clinical studies of human growth hormone treatment in healthy older adults have been relatively small in size and short-lived, so there is little or no information on this treatment’s long-term effects. This however has been found to contribute to the accelerated course of metabolic processes and the reproduction of free radicals – such activity leads to a decrease in life expectancy and the appearance of many illnesses, diseases, and side effects such as stroke, oncological neoplasms, etc.
How is the HGH administered? Does it come in pill form?
Human growth hormone treatment is approved in the United States only to treat its deficiency and problems related to HIV infection. This synthetic hormone is only useful if administered as an injection, therefore the human GH is not available in pill form.
Some dietary supplements that claim to increase its levels come in pill form, but research does not show whether they are beneficial. This hormone is considered a controlled substance by the food and drug administration. Using human growth hormone for a condition that is not approved, such as muscle building or anti-aging treatment in older adults, is illegal.
Diseases that are treated with growth hormone
There are some diseases or disorders for which the use of a synthetic supplement of GH is usually indicated, such as:
- Short stature with slow growth in children: it is a pathology that usually develops due to genetic causes. In the growth charts, the child appears with a percentile lower than 3.
- Chronic kidney failure: the kidneys are unable to filter toxins or wastes from the blood.
- Turner syndrome is the lack of part or all of an X chromosome, which causes short stature and delayed development.
- Noonan syndrome occurs when there is a mutation on chromosome 12, causing short stature, heart disease, and facial malformations.
While it is extremely beneficial for people that suffer from specific conditions, it is illegal to use this hormone without the prescription of a doctor. Some experts suggest that this hormone is one of the most effective factors in prolonging human life, others believe that it is dangerous for the human body. If you are concerned about a probable GH deficiency in you or a family member, speak with your doctor.
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