Growth hormone deficiency and replacement therapy in adults: Impact on survival
SourceReviews in Endocrine & Metabolic Disorders, 22, 1, (2021), pp. 125-133
Article / Letter to editor
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Reviews in Endocrine & Metabolic Disorders
SubjectRadboudumc 16: Vascular damage RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
In a seminal paper from 1990, Rosen and Bengtsson suggested that hypopituitary patients with a presumed growth hormone (GH) deficiency (GHD) have an excess mortality. Later studies have confirmed this finding but have also shown that the cause of the increased risk of death in these patients is multifactorial, including unreplaced GHD as well as non-physiological replacement therapy of other deficiencies, the etiology of hypopituitarism, and the side effects of tumor treatment. Only a few studies have investigated mortality in hypopituitary patients with GHD receiving GH replacement therapy (GHRT): these studies are retrospective observational studies with a wide range of underlying diseases but most of them show a mortality that is not different from the general population. Even though the research field of survival in GHD patients with and without GHRT is lacking prospective randomized trials, the evidence suggests that GHD in hypopituitary patients contributes to an excess mortality and modern replacement therapy including GHRT will result in a mortality that is approaching normal. Herein, we review the literature in the field of survival in GHD patients with and without GHRT. In addition, we outline the most important issues when evaluating studies in this area.
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