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Two years of growth hormone (GH) treatment increase isometric and isokinetic muscle strength in GH-deficient adults.

Journal article
Authors Gudmundur Johannsson
Gunnar Grimby
Katharina S Sunnerhagen
B A Bengtsson
Published in The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism
Volume 82
Issue 9
Pages 2877-84
ISSN 0021-972X
Publication year 1997
Published at Institute of Internal Medicine
Pages 2877-84
Language en
Keywords Adult, Aged, Cohort Studies, Female, Growth Hormone, deficiency, therapeutic use, Hand Strength, Humans, Isometric Contraction, drug effects, Leg, Male, Middle Aged, Muscle, Skeletal, physiology, Physical Endurance, Recombinant Proteins, Reference Values, Sex Characteristics, Time Factors
Subject categories Endocrinology


GH deficiency in adults is associated with reduced muscle mass and muscle strength. The objective of this trial was to follow the effect of 2 yr of GH treatment in GH-deficient adults on muscle performance in relation to a reference population. Knee extensor and flexor strengths for isometric and isokinetic concentric muscle strength were measured using a Kin-Com dynamometer. Hand-grip strength was measured in both hands. The fatigue index was calculated as the percent reduction in peak torque at 50 repeated isokinetic knee extensions. Superimposed, single twitch electrical stimulation was performed. The GH-deficient subjects had lower isometric knee extensor, knee flexor, and hand-grip strength than the reference population. Two years of GH treatment increased and normalized the mean isometric knee extensor and flexor strengths. The concentric knee flexor and extensor strength at an angular velocity of pi rad/s increased, as did the concentric knee flexor strength at an angular velocity of pi/3 rad/s. The increase in muscle strength was more marked in younger patients and in patients with lower initial muscle strength than predicted. Quadriceps endurance decreased, whereas the effect of superimposing single twitches on isometric contraction and hand-grip strength was unaffected by the GH treatment. Two years of GH therapy in GH-deficient adults increased and normalized isokinetic and isometric muscle strength studied in proximal muscle groups. Hand-grip strength and the degree of lack of maximal motor unit activation on voluntary isometric knee extensor force did not change. The dynamic local muscle fatigue index decreased.

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