Growth hormone can protect against fractures
Growth hormones used to reduce the risk of fracture in postmenopausal women with osteoporosis continue to work years after they are first administrated, a Swedish study has found.
Osteoporosis - a condition in which bones become fragile and prone to fracture - is common among postmenopausal women.
Hormones continue to work
The study by a team at Södra Älvsborgs Hospital in Borås found 7 years after hormone treatment was stopped, women who originally received it had a higher bone density than those who did not.
One of the study's authors, Emily Krantz, says this is the largest and longest controlled study of growth hormone treatment for osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
Published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, the study looked at women who received both a single dose and 2.5-unit dose of growth hormone for 3 year period.
It compared them to a placebo group who didn’t get any hormones.
The 80 women were aged between 50 and 70 when the study began.
Seven years after the removal of the treatment, the women who received higher growth hormones had higher bone mineral density levels than those on the placebo or those who had the lower doses.
Those on the growth hormone also saw their rate of fractures half over the 10 year period.
Before the study began, more than half of the participants had experienced some level of bone fracture.
Over the study period, those who were not on growth hormones saw their risk of fracture grow 4-fold.
Krantz says the finding suggest long-term beneficial effects of growth hormone.