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Should recombinant human growth hormone therapy be used in short small for gestational age children?
  1. L B Johnston,
  2. M O Savage
  1. Paediatric Endocrine Section, Department of Endocrinology, William Harvey Research Institute, Barts and the London Queen Mary School of Medicine, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr L B Johnston
    Senior Lecturer Honorary Consultant, Paediatric Endocrinology, St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London EC1A 7BE, UK;


Short small for gestational age (SGA) children represent 20% of all children with short stature1 and therefore constitute a significant portion of the caseload in a growth clinic. The recent approval of recombinant human growth hormone (GH) for the treatment of short stature in SGA children by the European Union’s Committee on Proprietary Medicinal Products offers a new licensed therapeutic option. This article examines the role of GH therapy in short SGA children with particular reference to selection of patients, effectiveness, safety, and its potential metabolic implications.

  • GH, growth hormone
  • IGF, insulin-like growth factor
  • IUGR, intrauterine growth retardation
  • SGA, small for gestational age
  • SGA
  • growth hormone
  • short stature

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