Objective: Idiopathic short stature (ISS) constitutes a heterogeneous group of short stature which is not associated with an endocrine or other identifiable cause. Some ISS patients may have varying degrees of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) deficiency. Recombinant growth hormone (rGH) treatment has been used by some authors with variable results. Reports on long-term rGH treatment are limited.Methods: In this study, 21 slowly growing, non-GH-deficient ISS children who received rGH treatment for 3.62±0.92 years were evaluated at the end of a 5.42±1.67-year follow-up period. The study group included patients with low IGF-1 levels who also responded well to an IGF generation test. The patients were divided into two groups as good responders [height increment >1 standard deviation (SD)] and poor responders (height increment <1 SD) at the end of the follow-up period.Results: The height of the patients improved from -3.16±0.46 SD score (SDS) to -1.9±0.66 SDS. At the end of the follow-up period, mean height SDS was -1.72. Eleven of the patients showed a good response to treatment. Clinical parameters were essentially similar in the good responders and the poor responders groups. A female preponderance was noted in the good responders group. Conclusion: rGH treatment can safely be used in ISS children. Long-term GH treatment will ameliorate the height deficit and almost 40% of patients may reach their target height.
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