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J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab. 1996 Jun;9 Suppl 3:333-8.

Growth hormone releasing hexapeptide-6 (GHRP-6) test in the diagnosis of GH-deficiency.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain.


Pituitary GH reserve can be assessed by substances that act directly at the somatotroph, such as GHRH, or by a variety of metabolic and neuropharmacological tests acting at the hypothalamic level, such as hypoglycemia, clonidine or L-Dopa. In order to evaluate GHRP-6 as a test of pituitary GH reserve, we studied GH responses of i.v. administered GHRP-6 in a group of short-statured children, as well as in a group of adults diagnosed with growth hormone deficiency (GHD) by conventional GH testing. Although we found that the GH response to GHRP-6 was lower in patients with GHD than in normal children, on an individual basis a considerable degree of overlap was observed between the two groups. In contrast, we found an almost complete blockade of GH response to either GHRP-6 or GHRH plus GHRP-6 in patients with pituitary stalk transection, suggesting that this could be a cost-effective test for the diagnosis of this condition. A similar finding was also obtained in GH response to the combined administration of GHRH plus GHRP-6 in patients with GHD of adult onset; this test may well prove valuable in the diagnosis of this clinical entity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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