Growth hormone treatment during hemodialysis in a randomized trial improves nutrition, quality of life, and cardiovascular risk

Bo Feldt-Rasmussen*, Martin Lange, Wladyslaw Sulowicz, Uzi Gafter, Neng Lai Kar, Jonas Wiedemann, Jens Sandal Christiansen, Meguid El Nahas, S. Sulkova, B. Feldt-Rasmussen*, M. Madsen, T. Hannedouche, K. N. Lai, E. Holtzman, U. Gafter, D. Schwartz, Z. Katzir, J. Weissgarten, M. Majdan, S. NiemczykW. Sulowicz, K. O. Lee, J. Ahlmen, M. El Nahas, S. Mitra, R. S.C. Rodger, J. S. Tapson, R. Rustom, W. Ayub, A. Mikhail, M. Thomas

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

107 Scopus citations

Abstract

Nutritional markers, such as lean body mass (LBM) and serum albumin, predict outcome in dialysis patients, in whom protein-energy malnutrition is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. The metabolic effects of human growth hormone (hGH) may improve the nutritional and cardiovascular health of these patients and consequently reduce morbidity and mortality. The aim of this study was to establish clinical proof of concept of hGH treatment for the improvement of the nutritional status in adult patients who are on maintenance hemodialysis. A total of 139 adult patients who were on maintenance hemodialysis and had serum albumin levels ≤40 g/L were randomly assigned to 6 mo of treatment with placebo or 20, 35, or 50 μg/kg per d hGH. Change in LBM and serum albumin (primary outcomes), health-related quality of life, and secondary efficacy and safety parameters were monitored. The study showed that hGH treatment increased LBM significantly at all dosage levels (2.5 kg [95% confidence interval 1.8 to 3.1] versus -0.4 kg [95% confidence interval -1.4 to 0.6]; P < 0.001 for pooled hGH groups versus placebo). Serum albumin tended to increase (P = 0.076), serum transferrin (P = 0.001) and serum HDL (P < 0.038) increased, and plasma homocysteine was reduced (P = 0.029). TNF-α also tended to decrease with treatment (P = 0.134). An improvement in the Role Physical SF-36 quality-of-life subscale was observed (P = 0.042). There were no differences in clinically relevant adverse events between groups. In conclusion, hGH therapy safely improves LBM, other markers of mortality and morbidity, and health-related quality of life in adult patients who are on maintenance hemodialysis. A long-term study is warranted to investigate whether these treatment benefits result in reduced mortality and morbidity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2161-2171
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the American Society of Nephrology : JASN
Volume18
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2007
Externally publishedYes

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