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The effect of treatment with growth hormone on fertility outcome in eugonadal women with growth hormone deficiency: report of four cases and review of the literature

Fertility and Sterility
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2008.09.065
  • Growth Hormone
  • Ovary
  • Pregnancy
  • Growth Hormone Deficiency
  • Female Infertility
  • Chemistry
  • Medicine


Objective To highlight the clinical role of standard GH replacement treatment on fertility and pregnancy outcomes in four infertile eugonadal women with GH deficiency (GHD). Design Case report. Setting Department of endocrinology and infertility clinic, tertiary-care university hospital. Patient(s) Four normogonadotrophic, normoprolactinemic patients with long-standing infertility, affected by GHD. In two patients (aged 30 and 34 years) GHD was diagnosed after a brain injury. The third patient (age 30 years) had a primary empty sella, documented by magnetic resonance imaging of the pituitary. The last patient (age 28 years) underwent transsphenoidal surgery for Ratke's cyst. The LH and FSH responses to GnRH were normal in all four patients. Two of the four patients also had secondary hypoadrenalism and hypothyroidism. Intervention(s) Patients received recombinant human GH replacement therapy (0.9–1.8 mg/week) for 6–12 months until pregnancy was first indicated by biochemical markers (β-hCG) and later confirmed by transvaginal sonography. The GH therapy was discontinued after confirmation of pregnancy. Main Outcome Measure(s) Pregnancy. Result(s) All patients remained off treatment throughout pregnancy; they had uneventful pregnancies and term deliveries. The babies were healthy and normal in terms of length and weight. Conclusion(s) Our case studies confirm the important clinical role of the GH–insulin-like growth factor I system in oocyte fertilization and the beginning of pregnancy in a selected population of eugonadotrophic infertile women.

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