Depressive tendency in children with growth hormone deficiency

Authors


Dr Shinpei Abe, Department of Pediatrics, Juntendo University School of Medicine, 2-1-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8421, Japan. Fax: +81 3 5800 1580; email: shiabe@juntendo.ac.jp

Abstract

Aim:  This study assessed changes in depressive tendency of children with growth hormone deficiency.

Methods:  The 41 children with growth hormone deficiency were assessed using the Depression Self-Rating Scale for Children. A score of 16 or more indicated a depressive tendency. The first assessment was carried out before growth hormone treatment, and the second one was carried out at 6 months or longer after the beginning of growth hormone treatment.

Results:  The Depression Self-Rating Scale for Children improved significantly from 9.7 ± 6.1 points before treatment to 6.9 ± 4.6 points after treatment (P= 0.0013). A depressive tendency was observed in six patients (15%) before growth hormone treatment, and in two patients (5%) after treatment. No significant relationship was observed between the decrease in the score and the length of the treatment. A significant improvement was observed for 6 of the 18 items in the Depression Self-Rating Scale for Children.

Conclusion:  A depressive tendency was relatively common in children with growth hormone deficiency, and the Depression Self-Rating Scale for Children was decreased after growth hormone treatment. These results suggest that growth hormone treatment may have positive effects on the psychosocial aspects in children with growth hormone deficiency.

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