How can I increase GH hormone

Growth hormone (GH)

From Dr. Karlheinz Zeilberger, MD
All NetDoktor content is checked by medical journalists.

The Growth hormone GH (or STH) is determined in patients with developmental disorders, such as dwarf or giant stature. Read here what GH exactly is, which standard values ​​apply in different age groups and what can lead to changed measured values!

What is GH?

GH is the abbreviation for "growth hormone". Other names for the Growth hormone are hGH (human growth hormone), STH (somatotropic hormone) and Somatotropin.

The growth hormone is made in the pituitary gland in the brain and released as needed. It promotes the growth of the body and maturation. In addition, it increases the production of protein (protein biosynthesis), increases fat turnover and supports the mineralization of the bones.

Too much growth hormone leads to gigantic stature in children and to disproportionate bone growth in adults (large hands, feet and rough facial features).

When is the GH value determined?

GH is measured in the case of developmental disorders in the sense of giant or dwarf stature as well as unusual growth of the limbs, for example with strikingly coarse facial features, large hands or feet. Sometimes the growth hormone level is also measured for certain metabolic or hormonal disorders, for example, if the pituitary gland is underactive (anterior pituitary insufficiency).

Normal growth hormone levels

GH is determined from the blood serum, whereby strict conditions must be observed when taking blood: The following standard values ​​apply for a collection at 8 a.m. and for an empty patient:

The informative value of a GH basal value is low. The reading can change within minutes, and normal values ​​do not rule out illness. Therefore, so-called function tests should also be carried out, which provide additional information, for example a GHRH test. The release of growth hormone is stimulated by another hormone before the measurement is made.

When is the GH level too low?

A GH value that is too low is found in a dysfunction of the region of the pituitary gland where growth hormone is produced (anterior pituitary insufficiency). However, this can only be determined by a conspicuous finding in the function test (GHRH test).

When is the GH level too high?

An increased growth hormone level occurs in diseases of the pituitary gland that lead to increased production of the hormone, for example in a tumor. This leads to tall stature in children and to an enlarged hands, feet, lower jaw, chin and nose in adults (so-called acromegaly). Here, too, the diagnosis can only be made with the help of a function test and not with a single GH determination.

Hypoglycaemia can also lead to increased growth hormone levels.

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