Clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of growth hormone in children: a systematic review and economic evaluation

Bryant J, Cave1 C, Mihaylova B, Chase D, McIntyre L, Gerard K, Milne R
Record ID 32002000909
Authors' objectives:

This review considers the clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of growth hormone (GH) therapy in children with GH deficiency (GHD), Turner syndrome (TS), chronic renal failure (CRF), Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) or idiopathic short stature (ISS).

Authors' results and conclusions: Although the quality of evidence proved variable, the studies suggest that GH treatment can increase short-term growth and improve final height. The reported effects of GH on short-term growth should be considered more reliable because the evidence is of higher quality. The effects of GH on final height should be considered with much greater caution because the quality of the studies is generally much poorer. Results suggest that the effects of GH on short-term growth velocity (at 1 year) can range from no improvement to approximately 1 standard deviation above the normal growth velocity for children of the same age. Final height gains for treated children over untreated children appear to range from approximately 2 to 11 cm (GHD, 8-11 cm; TS, 5 cm; CRF, 3-9 cm; PWS, 10-11 cm; ISS, 2-7 cm).
Authors' recommendations: GH is already prescribed in the UK. However, a full course of treatment is expensive. Given that only a minority of children with licensed conditions are currently receiving GH, the budgetary impact of large increases in prescribing would be substantial. If GH were to be prescribed to any significant proportion of children with ISS, the budgetary impact would be very substantial because this group of children is much larger than the others.
Authors' methods: Systematic review
Project Status: Completed
URL for project:
Year Published: 2002
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: England, United Kingdom
MeSH Terms
  • Child
  • Costs and Cost Analysis
  • Growth Hormone
  • Growth Disorders
Organisation Name: NIHR Health Technology Assessment programme
Contact Address: NIHR Journals Library, National Institute for Health and Care Research, Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre, Alpha House, University of Southampton Science Park, Southampton SO16 7NS, UK
Contact Name:
Contact Email:
Copyright: 2009 Queen's Printer and Controller of HMSO
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