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Trends Endocrinol Metab. 2011 May;22(5):171-8. doi: 10.1016/j.tem.2011.02.005. Epub 2011 Mar 17.

Growth hormone and physical performance.

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Pituitary Research Unit, Garvan Institute of Medical Research and Department of Endocrinology, St Vincent's Hospital, Sydney, NSW 2010, Australia.


There has been limited research and evidence that GH enhances physical performance in healthy adults or in trained athletes. Even so, human growth hormone (GH) is widely abused by athletes. In healthy adults, GH increases lean body mass, although it is possible that fluid retention contributes to this effect. The most recent data indicate that GH does not enhance muscle strength, power, or aerobic exercise capacity, but improves anaerobic exercise capacity. In fact, there are adverse effects of long-term GH excess such that sustained abuse of GH can lead to a state mimicking acromegaly, a condition with increased morbidity and mortality. This review will examine GH effects on body composition and physical performance in health and disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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