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Significant attention has come the way of human growth hormone (HGH) in the immediate past couple of decades as a result of the great benefits that have been associated with it. The interesting thing is that some of its uses, such as anti-aging and muscle mass building, are not even approved. Treatment of Crohn’s disease is one of these benefits, but many people are not even aware of this.
What is Crohn’s Disease?
Crohn’s disease is a long-term, chronic inflammatory disorder of the intestines, particularly the colon and ileum. Along with ulcerative colitis, it is among the most common irritable bowel syndromes or diseases (IBSs or IBDs). The disorder causes the gastrointestinal tract to get inflamed and weakened. This can lead to frequent spells of bloating, stomach cramps, constipation or diarrhea. Rectal bleeding, arising from intestinal wall breakdown, is also among the possible symptoms. The cause of the disease is not known, but exaggerated immune system response has been suggested. Unfortunately, there is no known medical cure for Crohn’s disease, but there are treatment options that can be used to control it. Some studies have also highlighted the possible usefulness of HGH therapy to those battling the disorder.
HGH Treatment for Crohn’s Disease
One very popular study that is usually cited in support of the use of human growth hormone for the treatment of Crohn’s disease is that done by a group of researchers headed by Dr. Alfred Slonim at North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, New York. The study, which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2000, focused on 37 adult patients with moderate-to-severe cases of the disorder. Of the total participants, 19 were given 5 mg of recombinant HGH injection a day for a week, along with maintenance dose of 1.5 mg a day a short while after. All patients were instructed to increase their protein uptake as well.
Measuring changes using a Crohn’s Disease Index, the researchers observed that about 74 percent of those in the growth hormone group experienced noticeable improvement, including elimination of abdominal pain and less bouts of diarrhea. Those on Prednisolone were reportedly able to either discontinue or reduce its dosage. By comparison, the remaining 18 placed on placebo did not report any improvement in their digestive habits despite being placed on a high-protein diet also. This made the researchers to conclude that HGH therapy may be beneficial to individuals with Crohn’s disease. Growth hormone seemed to produce effects somewhat similar to that Infliximab, the anti-inflammatory drug specifically approved for the treatment of the disorder. It also helps to improve the health of intestinal tissues, although no exams were carried out to prove this.
In addition, it was shown in studies by Dr. Doug Wilmore and associates at Harvard Medical School teaching affiliate Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts that recombinant HGH injections combined with L-Glutamine can be helpful to people suffering from short bowel syndrome. Participants, who had difficulty digesting food and for whom recourse had to be made to intravenous feeding, were able to both eat solid food and effectively absorb nutrients after having HGH therapy. The results from the studies indicate growth hormone treatment can equally be beneficial to individuals with Crohn’s disease or colitis.
Should You Use HGH to Treat Crohn’s Disease?
The question may arise on the appropriateness of HGH therapy for dealing with Crohn’s disease. This may especially be the case when you consider there is not much information available on how growth hormone actually helps in managing the disorder. However, the hormone is known to enhance cell mediated response of immune system processes and antibodies to the presence of antigen. This is, in fact, a reason HGH has been said to be beneficial to patients suffering from autoimmune disorders such as arthritis and lupus as well as to those with HIV/AIDS.
Furthermore, HGH is known for its cell regeneration, reproduction and repair capability. It promotes the multiplication of intestinal tissues as well as organ restoration. This goes a long way in improving the clinical condition of a person with Crohn’s disease.
There are stories by people who got impressive results using growth hormone for the treatment of Crohn’s disease, corroborating what has been shown in the few studies available. HGH may be beneficial to people suffering from other forms of IBS such as ulcerative colitis as well. The potential of getting the desired results is greater when the treatment in combined with lifestyle changes and good nutrition.