Korean J Pediatr.  2014 Sep;57(9):379-383. 10.3345/kjp.2014.57.9.379.

Efficacy and safety of growth hormone treatment for children born small for gestational age

  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Hallym University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. ithwang83@hallym.or.kr


Recombinant growth hormone (GH) is an effective treatment for short children who are born small for gestational age (SGA). Short children born SGA who fail to demonstrate catch-up growth by 2-4 years of age are candidates for GH treatment initiated to achieve catch-up growth to a normal height in early childhood, maintain a normal height gain throughout childhood, and achieve an adult height within the normal target range. GH treatment at a dose of 35-70 microg/kg/day should be considered for those with very marked growth retardation, as these patients require rapid catch-up growth. Factors associated with response to GH treatment during the initial 2-3 years of therapy include age and height standard deviation scores at the start of therapy, midparental height, and GH dose. Adverse events due to GH treatment are no more common in the SGA population than in other conditions treated with GH. Early surveillance in growth clinics is strongly recommended for children born SGA who have not caught up. Although high dose of up to 0.067 mg/kg/day are relatively safe for short children with growth failure, clinicians need to remain aware of long-term mortality and morbidity after GH treatment.


Infant; Small for gestational age infant; Growth hormone; Treatment outcome; Safety

MeSH Terms

Gestational Age*
Growth Hormone*
Treatment Outcome
Growth Hormone
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