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March 1, 2011

Low HGH Symptoms: Do You Suffer From Them?

weight loss. low HGH symptomsLow HGH symptoms (growth hormone) are many and involve all organ systems. There is much controversy regarding the best way to diagnose adult growth hormone deficiency.  There are many reasons for this.

A major challenge in diagnosing adult growth hormone deficiency is that the symptoms associated with it are non-specific.  This means the symptoms can have other causes.  The more symptoms an individual has, though, the more likely he or she is low in growth hormone.

There’s general agreement that adult growth hormone deficiency should not be determined based solely on symptoms; nor should it sole be based on laboratory studies, as there are problems with relying on laboratory studies alone.  In most cases the diagnosis is made based on a combination of signs, symptoms, and laboratory studies.

Growth hormone affects all parts of the body.  Growth hormone also improves the effects of other hormones by increasing hormone-receptor activity.  So an individual who has low growth hormone is likely to experience a number of symptoms.  Many symptoms related to low growth hormone are psychosocial and many times go unrecognized or attributed to another disorder.

Low HGH Symptoms/Signs

  • Low energy
  • Decreased strength
  • Decreased exercise tolerance
  • Decreased muscle mass
  • Decreased bone mass
  • Increased body fat and weight (around waist)
  • Anxiety/depression
  • Decreased libido and sexual function
  • Thin dry skin
  • Social withdrawal
  • Impaired concentration/memory
  • Increased LDL cholesterol
  • Insulin resistance
  • Poor tissue healing

Each of the low HGH symptoms above can be caused by other conditions.  Therefore, a thorough physical examination and extensive blood work is necessary to rule out other laboratory studies.  Special studies like an MRI and growth hormone stimulation tests are also frequently necessary.

Below is the QoL-AGHDA (Quality of Life – Assessment of Growth Hormone Deficiency in Adults) questionnaire developed by McKennna.  It’s useful to determine if someone is experiencing low HGH symptoms.

It is used along with laboratory studies to help determine whether an individual should be considered for human growth hormone replacement therapy.   A “yes” response to at least 11 questions is typically necessary to qualify for human growth hormone treatment along with meeting the required laboratory criteria.

Yes No
I have to struggle to finish jobs

I feel a strong need to sleep during the day

I often feel lonely even when I am with other people

I have to read things several times before they sink in

It is difficult for me to make friends

It takes a lot of effort for me to do simple tasks

I have difficulty controlling my emotions

I often lose track of what I want to say

I lack confidence

I have to push myself to do things

I often feel very tense

I feel as if I let people down

I find it hard to mix with people

I feel worn out even when I’ve not done anything

There are times when I feel very low

I avoid responsibility if possible

I avoid mixing with people I don’t know well

I feel as if I am a burden to people

I often forget what people have said to me

I find it difficult to plan ahead

I am easily irritated by other people

I often feel too tired to do the things I ought to do

I have to force myself to do all the things that need doing

I often have to force myself to stay awake

My memory lets me down

Did you pass the test? Or, do you have low HGH symptoms?

Related articles include “Low Testosterone Symptoms“, “Low Estrogen Symptoms: Who Wants Them?”, and “Avoid Symptoms of Low Progesterone“.

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Dr. Joe Jacko

Dr. Joe is board certified in internal medicine and sports medicine with additional training in hormone replacement therapy and regenerative medicine. He has trained or practiced at leading institutions including the Hughston Clinic, Cooper Clinic, Steadman-Hawkins Clinic of the Carolinas, and Cenegenics. He currently practices in Columbus, Ohio at Grandview Primary Care. Read more about Dr. Joe Jacko

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