We studied the effect of growth hormone (GH) replacement on bone mineral density (BMD) and some parameters of bone metabolism, including undercarboxylated osteocalcin (ucOC), an independent predictive marker of fracture risk, which has not been previously determined or compared during GH treatment. Measurements were performed at baseline and after 6, 12, 18 and 24 months of the initiation of the GH therapy in 21 adult patients with GH deficiency. Significant increases were observed in BMD after 1 year at the lumbar spine and after 1.5 years at the femoral neck. Serum total OC and carboxylated (c) OC increased and reached the maximum at 6 months, but the values remained over the baseline at both 12 and 18 months. The ucOC:total OC ratio changed contrarily: it decreased at 6 months, then increased again and reached the baseline level during the next 18 months. Serum calcium (Ca), phosphate (P) and total alkaline phosphatase (ALP) levels increased after 6 months, thereafter the Ca and P values decreased, while the total ALP remained elevated until 12 months. Serum parathormone decreased at 12 months and increased again thereafter. GH replacement therapy is associated with improvement of ucOC, a marker of fracture risk, which in addition to the increase of BMD, might contribute to the beneficial effect of GH replacement therapy on bone metabolism.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine