Growth Hormone Therapy Helpful in Fibromyalgia

Published: July 14, 2012
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Several earlier studies have shown that growth hormone (GH) deficiency is common in FMS — and that therapy with GH can be helpful. A new study adds more evidence.

In this placebo-controlled study of 120 fibromyalgia patients, daily GH injections were more effective than a placebo. After 12 months, 53% of patients no longer had the 11 tender points that are necessary for a diagnosis of FMS.

Although GH injections can be helpful, I rarely use them. I prefer to address the underlying causes of hormone deficiency (hypothalamic/pituitary dysfunction) with SHINE. In addition, growth hormone is naturally increased by exercise, sex, and sleep.

My concerns about using GH injections include:

  • Need for daily injections.
  • High cost.
  • Increased risk of carpal tunnel syndrome (already common in FMS).
  • Possible cancer risk (this is speculative).

Nonetheless, GH injections remain a valuable option if the standard SHINE protocol doesn't work.

References

"Effect of GH as add-on therapy in severe fibromyalgia syndrome. Results from the IIIb, CT27560 placebo-controlled, multicenter trial," Endocrine Abstracts, (2011) 26 P225.

Jacob Teitelbaum, MD

is one of the world's leading integrative medical authorities on fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. He is the lead author of four research studies on their treatments, and has published numerous health & wellness books, including the bestseller on fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome From Fatigued to Fantastic! and his newer The Fatigue and Fibromyalgia Solution.  Dr. Teitelbaum is one of the most frequently quoted fibromyalgia experts in the world and appears often as a guest on news and talk shows nationwide including Good Morning America, The Dr. Oz Show, Oprah & Friends, CNN, and Fox News Health. 

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