Growth hormone (GH) controls the growth of soft tissue and bone. Elevated GH causes an excess of bone and soft tissue growth. In adults, this can cause a rare disorder called acromegaly. It can cause serious complications and early death if not treated.
In young children, bone fusion and growth is still occurring. Excess GH can cause a similar condition called gigantism.
The pituitary gland is a small gland located at the base of the brain. It produces many hormones, including GH.
In most cases, the elevation of GH is caused by a benign tumor of this gland. In a small number of cases, malignant tumors of other organs (pancreas, adrenal, lung) may be the source of excess GH.
Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
Last reviewedOctober 2012by Kari Kassir, MD
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