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Burns. 2003 Dec;29(8):793-7.

Oxandrolone induced lean mass gain during recovery from severe burns is maintained after discontinuation of the anabolic steroid.

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Department of Surgery, Trauma and Burn Center, Brigham & Women's Hospital, 75 Francis Street, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Weight loss and lean mass loss from burn induced catabolism can be more rapidly restored when the anabolic steroid oxandrolone is added to optimum nutrition compared to nutrition alone. Our purpose in this study was to determine whether the regained lean body mass (LBM) is retained 6 months after stopping oxandrolone. Forty-five severe burn patients, entering the recovery phase were randomized into a nutrition group alone or with the addition of oxandrolone, 20mg per day upon admission to the acute burn rehabilitation (RH) unit. Oxandrolone was discontinued after at least 80% of the involuntary weight loss occurring in the acute burn period, was restored. Body composition was measured using bioelectric impedence analysis (BIA). We found that patients receiving oxandrolone, in the rehabilitation unit, regained weight and lean mass two to three times faster than with nutrition alone. The difference was statistically significant (P<0.05). All patients were discharged from RH on a nutrition and exercise program and monitored in the outpatient burn center. After 6 months, body weight and body composition were again measured. We found that the body weight and lean mass which was restored during RH, was maintained 6 months after discontinuation of oxandrolone. Lost lean mass was not yet restored in the nutrition alone group. We can conclude that body weight and lean mass which is lost, due to burn induced catabolism, can be effectively restored in the post-burn recovery period with oxandrolone. The body weight and lost lean mass which is regained, is maintained 6 months after stopping the drug.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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