One of the downsides to any surgery – whether emergency, experimental, elected, or necessary is the time it takes to heal. The younger you are, the faster your body will heal. That is a well-known fact. The reason for speedy healing in youth is the abundance of a chemical called human growth hormone (somatotropin). For that reason, doctors have studied theto see if supplemental growth hormones would accomplish the same result.
There are some positive results on HGH and healing, yet not all trials find an acceptable outcome. A 2007 German study on tibia fractures (shin bone) found that HGH therapy only helped with breaks that did not puncture the skin.
How do you know if using HGH after a scheduled surgery will help?
Part of the problem with making this determination is the lack of extensive published research. One study sponsored by Dallas Maverick’s owner Mark Cuban has yet to publish its research. The medical and sports communities are awaiting the results of the use of HGH before and after ACL surgery. Many surgeons today are hesitant to prescribe HGH as there are no current guidelines for its surgical use. The best thing to do is to discuss the possibility with your surgeon, as well as with a hormone specialist.
We know that children with ulcerative colitis undergoing J-pouch surgery experienced faster healing times (less fatigue) and regained their muscle strength at a quicker rate. The children who received HGH started treatment two days before surgery. HGH therapy continued for seven days post op.
Can HGH speed healing if it is used before the surgery?
Based on current information, it seems that using HGH before surgery helps to preserve lean muscle mass and strength. Some surgeries have longer recuperation times. The preservation of muscle in these instances is highly beneficial.
HGH can help speed healing following some types of
surgery – but not all.
Does HGH Speed Healing After Surgery?
We know that HGH has the ability to speed some types of healing – especially when increased cellular development is necessary. HGH supports cellular regeneration that can help heal and repair damaged tissue. Unfortunately, not all studies back up this claim.
A study on HGH healing after surgery following arthroscopic rotator cuff repair did not provide any positive outcomes. The study parameters used either a placebo, 4 mg, or 8 mg of HGH once a week for three months postoperatively. There was no difference in the outcome for healing time. The authors of the study do recommend further investigation changing the dose or possible using a daily administration.
From what we have learned so far about HGH and healing, daily administration beginning before surgery and continuing postoperatively can have the most benefit for patients.
In another study on patients undergoing infrarenal abdominal aortic aneurysm repair, HGH had the following benefits:
- Enhanced O2-production in polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMN)
- Prolonged the lifespan of the PMN cells
- Down-regulated apoptosis (cellular death)
HGH supports cellular regeneration which can help heal and repair damaged tissue.
Benefits of HGH for Healing Tissues and Bones After Surgery
There is well-documented use of HGH healing injuries in burn patients. Growth hormone (although not an anabolic steroid) functions as an anabolic agent to help speed healing of damaged tissue. HGH significantly speeds wound healing time of burned tissues.
Much of the study of HGH healing after surgery has been done on rats. Aside from improving healing time, HGH also helps reduce inflammation while increasing collagen deposition.
Perhaps one of the most promising studies is one out of Barcelona where spinal injury 18 patients received eight HGH therapy or a placebo for six months. Each participant underwent two hours of physical exercise daily. The HGH treated group experienced the following benefits:
• Improved self-care abilities
• Better respiration and sphincter control
• Regain of more feeling below the injury site
HGH is extremely beneficial for healing burn injuries. There may also be profound benefits for spinal injuries.
How Quickly Can HGH Help Healing After Surgery?
Every surgery is different. How quickly a person will heal depends on the type of procedure and the physiological state of the individual before surgery. Putting a timeline on HGH and healing is impossible. What we do know is the human growth hormone can help speed up the healing process in many situations.
We recommend speaking with a hormone specialist at our clinic to discuss your concerns about HGH healing after surgery. Consultations are confidential and conducted by telephone. There is no charge or obligation for this service.
Every person, surgery, and situation is different. Speak with a hormone specialist to find out if HGH can speed your healing time.
- Julio L. Garcia, MD
- Richard Hodin, M.D.
- P Kissmeyer-Nielsen, M B Jensen, and S Laurberg
Hormone Administration in an Aesthetic Surgery Practice: One Surgeon’s Experience
By the way, doctor: HGH after surgery
Perioperative growth hormone treatment and functional outcome after major abdominal surgery: a randomized, double-blind, controlled study.