Quality of life, mood disturbances and psychological parameters in adult patients with GH deficiency

Panminerva Med. 2012 Dec;54(4):323-31.


An increased prevalence of depression, emotional lability, decreased energy levels, and poor quality of life have been reported in adults with GH deficiency (GHD). The impairment of psychological parameters depends on the aetiology of GHD and the presence of other pituitary hormone deficiencies because of hormonal effects on neural cell metabolism. Cognitive dysfunctions appear to be specifically related to GHD itself, whereas the lower emotional well-being and reduced motor performance are attributed to other pituitary hormone deficiencies. Traumatic Brain Injury causes very often hypopituitarism and GHD as well as other many psychological symptoms: cognitive impairment, sleeping disorders, and depression. Many neurobehavioral symptoms of postconcussion syndrome (PCS) are the same suffered by adult GHD and hypopituitaric patients but there are no data about the occurrence of hypopituitarism in PCS. In some studies treatment with rhGH is reported to have a beneficial effect and GHD could contribute itself to the global impairment of psychological dysfunctions. The link between psychosocial impairments and GHD is not fully understood. The effects of long-term rhGH therapy on cognitive functions are largely unknown. Thus, long-term placebo-controlled double-blind studies are required to investigate whether psychological dysfunctions are reversible on GH substitution.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Affect*
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Cognition
  • Growth Disorders / blood
  • Growth Disorders / epidemiology
  • Growth Disorders / psychology*
  • Human Growth Hormone / blood
  • Human Growth Hormone / deficiency*
  • Humans
  • Hypopituitarism / blood
  • Hypopituitarism / epidemiology
  • Hypopituitarism / psychology*
  • Mental Health*
  • Prognosis
  • Quality of Life*
  • Risk Factors


  • Biomarkers
  • Human Growth Hormone