Decreased growth hormone response to dexamethasone stimulation test in obese children

Acta Paediatr. 1994 Jan;83(1):103-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.1994.tb12963.x.


Acute administration of glucocorticoids is a recently described stimulus for growth hormone secretion. The aim of the present study was the assessment of dexamethasone-induced growth hormone secretion in obese children. Dexamethasone iv tests were carried out in 14 normal control and 8 obese children. Growth hormone was measured by radioimmunoassay up to 5 h after dexamethasone administration. Dexamethasone elicited clear growth hormone secretion in normal children (mean peak 12.3 +/- 1.6; area under the curve 682.3 +/- 74.3). In the obese children, dexamethasone induced a slight but significant (p < 0.01) increase in growth hormone over basal values. However, the growth hormone response in this group was significantly lower than in the normal controls, when comparing both mean peak (5.5 +/- 2.3, mean +/- SEM) (p < 0.01) and area under the curve (306.8 +/- 44.5) (p < 0.001).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Dexamethasone*
  • Female
  • Growth Hormone / blood
  • Growth Hormone / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Obesity / blood
  • Obesity / metabolism*


  • Dexamethasone
  • Growth Hormone