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      Effect of Low-Dose Oral and Intravenous Dexamethasone Administration on Growth Hormone Secretion in Children

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          Acute dexamethasone administration (2 mg/m<sup>2</sup> i.v. and 4 mg orally) increases growth hormone (GH) release in children. We evaluated the effect of a low intravenous dose (1 mg/m<sup>2</sup>) of dexamethasone on GH secretion in 8 short normal children and in 6 GH-deficient children. There was a significant GH increase at 120, 150 and 180min in short normal children (maximal value: 18.9 ± 2.1 μg/l; X ± EP), compared to placebo administration. In contrast, no significant GH elevation was seen in GH-deficient children (1.3 ± 0.4 μg/l). There was no difference in the GH response after intravenous dexamethasone and oral clonidine in these same 8 short normal children and 6 GH-deficient children. Although no significant GH release was observed after dexamethasone or clonidine in GH deficiency, an increase in GH after GH-releasing hormone was seen (6.1 ± 1.9 μg/l). There was a significant GH increase (18.5 ± 3.3 μg/l) after low-dose (2-mg) oral dexamethasone administration in another 8 short normal children, which was similar to values after intravenous injection. No side effects were noted after intravenous or oral dexamethasone. In conclusion, low-dose intravenous or oral dexamethasone administration causes a marked GH release in short normal children, probably mediated by hypothalamic structures.

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          Author and article information

          Horm Res Paediatr
          Hormone Research in Paediatrics
          S. Karger AG
          10 December 2008
          : 48
          : 1
          : 5-10
          Division of Endocrinology, Department of Medicine, Escola Paulista de Medicina, UNIFESP São Paulo, Brazil
          185356 Horm Res 1997;48:5–10
          © 1997 S. Karger AG, Basel

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          Pages: 6
          Original Paper


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