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Growth Hormone May Have Benefit in Heart Failure

(MedPage Today) Treating growth hormone deficiency in patients with chronic heart failure may slow down the disease, researchers found.
In a small, single-center study, patients who were randomized to growth hormone therapy had a significant increase in peak oxygen consumption over 4 years compared with controls…, Antonio Cittadini, MD, … and colleagues reported online in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
"Although this is a preliminary study, the finding suggests a new therapeutic approach to a large proportion of growth-hormone-deficient patients with chronic heart failure," they wrote.
Previous research suggests that growth hormone deficiency affects nearly 40% of patients with chronic heart failure, and growth hormone replacement in the short term improves cardiac function -- although some studies have shown cardiac risks with regular growth hormone replacement.
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