Height growth and skeletal maturation were compared in 201 patients treated for between 1 and 15 years with growth hormone (GH) supplied by the Medical Research Council. 107 patients had isolated GH-deficiency, 30 had panhypopituitarism, and 64 craniopharyngiomata. The mean rate of skeletal maturation did not differ between the first year and the total period of treatment, averaging 1 'year'/year in the patients with isolated GH-deficiency or panhypopituitarism, and 0.6 'years'/year in those with craniopharyngioma. No association was observed between the rate of skeletal maturation and the bone age or the bone age deficit (chronological minus bone age) at the start of treatment. Mean height standard deviation score for bone age was negative in all three diagnostic groups at the start of treatment, but became less negative as treatment progressed in patients with isolated GH-deficiency or craniopharyngioma. In patients with panhypopituitarism there was no significant change in height standard deviation score for bone age as a result of treatment. The findings do not support the suggestion that treatment with GH(UK) causes ultimate stunting due to greater osseous maturation than growth in height.
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