Growth Hormone Test ( GH Test )
The growth hormone (GH) produced by the pituitary gland is necessary for growth. It helps in metabolism. Elevated levels and decreased levels are associated with abnormal growth in children and indicate a variety of conditions in both adults and children. A growth hormone test is used to check the levels of growth hormones in the blood.
Why is the test performed?
A growth hormone test is helpful in diagnosing GH deficiency or excess GH production, in order to determine the existence of dwarfism or gigantism in a child; as well as to assess the function of the pituitary gland and to monitor treatment that uses the growth hormone. In adults the test may be used to detect acromegaly.
When is the test ordered?
The growth hormone test is ordered by a physician if a child is shows the following signs and symptoms:
- Slow growth
- Delayed puberty
- Short stature
- Delayed bone density
In adults the test is recommended when they suffer from
- High cholesterol with abnormal lipid changes
- Decreased bone density
- Reduced exercise tolerance
How is the sample collected?
Blood samples are collected from a vein in the arm. The samples are drawn at timed intervals under medical supervision with a suppression or stimulation procedure.
How to prepare for the test?
No special preparations required for this test.