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In adults, growth hormone deficiency is associated with an increase in risk factors for atherosclerosis and with increased oxidative stress. Now a study in Italy of 10 prepubertal children with growth hormone deficiency (GHD) and 20 healthy controls (

) has shown that children with GHD have increased indices of oxidative stress. They had high plasma concentrations of malondialdehyde, low lag phase (an index of susceptibility of low density lipoprotein to in vitro oxidation), and low concentrations of vitamin E. After a year of growth hormone replacement the test results had returned to normal.

There have been case reports of cerebral vasculitis and central nervous system damage in children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) but the overall risk of central nervous system involvement has not been assessed. Now a study in Germany (

) has provided reassuring data. The study included 31 patients aged 6 to 24 years with systemic JIA (Still’s disease) of a mean duration of 6 years and 31 matched healthy controls. The two groups had similar and normal results on tests for intelligence, memory and learning, attention, fine motor skills, and social and emotional problems. The patients reported fewer social activities. These researchers conclude that cognitive performance and social adjustment are not affected in patients with systemic JIA.

A magnetic resonance imaging study in Norway (

) has shown changes …

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