|Should The Use Of HGH To Increase Strength And Improve Recovery Time Be Recommended?
HGH on Healing and Performance
At present, the scientific community is in general agreement that
the Human Growth Hormone (HGH) is an effective drug when it comes to healing,
even though its performance enhancement properties remain a consensus question
mark as well. To be more specific, a lot of the tests done on HGH has been on
the elderly—i.e., people whose HGH production has begun to drop—instead of
athletes—i.e., people whose HGH production may or may not be in normal, healthy
levels prior to taking HGH.
What's more, although tests have demonstrated that the drug might
help body builders grow muscles without any accompanying exercise, it's not
necessarily linked with a spike in strength or improvement in athletic prowess.
The American Journal of Sports Medicine's 2004 review of literature that was
developed as a manual of sorts for team doctors construed that there's no
concrete proof that HGH supplementation will help in improving the performance
of any given athlete.
HGH Facts and Figures
HGH, which was initially isolated in 1956 and used on children
suffering from stunted growth by 1959, is tasked by the body to regulate its
growth and development by stimulating the liver and other tissues to create
insulin-like growth factor (also known as IGF-1). One of the chief
responsibilities of HGH is promoting the production of bone and cartilage: a
boon that hasn't been ignored by orthopedists and athletes alike. When
administered via injection with drugs like Humatrope, synthetic HGH induces the
Simply put, HGH is basically a very potent anabolic hormone that
is made naturally by your body. It's synthesized by the anterior pituitary gland
at the bottom of the brain and stimulates bone, cartilage, and muscle growth.
Moreover, your body produces this hormone throughout your lifetime, but produces
most of it during your younger years.
Prior to the advent of genetic engineering, HGH was once
extracted through the pituitary glands of human cadavers. These organs from the
deceased were processed of HGH, which was then administered via injection.
Eventually, synthetically made HGH became available in unlimited numbers in the
laboratory, which forced the medical commission of the International Olympic
Committee to ban the drug in 1989.
HGH and Performance Enhancement
HGH has long claimed its stake in the anti-aging front, but does
that necessarily mean it should be used in sports medicine as well, particularly
injury rehabilitation or even surgery recovery? The answer to that question
remains to be seen. What is known is that athletes—particularly body
builders—are currently taking the medication because it's a very effective
Then again, there is no documented evidence in regards to its
performance enhancement properties, which may be the reason why athletes tend to
use a cocktail of HGH mixed with testosterone-based drugs in order to add
strength to the extra musculature. The mix also enables tired muscles to heal
quicker, which in turn allows athletes to train more often and harder.
According to Dr. Richard Delamarter—a UCLA professor who's also a
spine surgeon from Los Angeles—a "whole spectrum" of athletic competitors
ranging from the pros to the minor league and all the way down to high school
players have been using HGH to improve their abilities. He has seen the benefits
of HGH when it comes to helping patients recover from surgery during the
post-operation period as well. It should be noted that even though this is just
anecdotal evidence, it comes from a highly credible source.
HGH and Surgical Recovery
Then again, Delamarter also stresses that he doesn't prescribe
HGH to his patients because surgical recovery isn't one of the Department of
Health and Human Services' three approved uses for the drug, which includes
helping children with stunted growth, supplementing adult growth hormone
deficiency, and avoiding AIDS muscle wasting or atrophy. To be true, many
athletes obtain this medicine through other means, like anti-aging doctors who
concentrate on the rationale that adult growth hormone deficiency is a valid, if
controversial, reason to prescribe HGH.
All the same, Delamarter doesn't exactly dissuade his patients
from using HGH either as he had not seen from personal experience a damaging and
disadvantageous reaction to the medication. He also emphasizes that recovery
periods are cut in half by the remarkable treatment. He believes that once
conclusive scientific tests show the effectiveness of the drug during the
post-operative recovery period, then HGH will become "the standard of care for
sports medicine and surgeons" in the future.
Delamarter isn't naive to the potential of athletes using and
abusing HGH in order to gain a competitive, perhaps even unfair and illegal,
edge. Because many elite athletes with million-dollar careers at stake go by the
logic that more equals better, they are also the most susceptible people to
HGH's numerous and detrimental side effects.
Risks That May Come With Taking
If someone has too much HGH, he increases his risk of acquiring a
condition called acromegaly (also known as acromeglia), which is a disease that
causes your hands and feet to become excessively large and disfigured. Other
symptoms of this syndrome include facial bone enlargement that distort the
appearance of your face and connective tissue overgrowth.
In addition, organs such as the kidneys, liver, and heart can
undergo excessive growth as well, which can lead to fatal maladies such as high
blood pressure, heart problems, inflammation of the stomach or intestine lining,
and so on. Then there are also side effects like dizziness, pituitary gigantism,
stiff joints, abnormal fat distribution, edema, carpal tunnel syndrome, damage
to your thyroid gland, accelerated osteoarthritis, diabetes, infection, stiff
joints and muscles, and a possible risk for cancers due to enhanced cell growth.
Granted, there's no conclusive evidence that HGH abuse will cause
cancer, but Dr. Shlomo Melmed, a Los Angeles endocrinologist, alleges that it
could lead to the spread of a tumor. He advises people who want to undergo HGH
treatment to heal injuries or recover from surgery to avoid using it because
there hasn't been any proof as of yet that it can help in healing, and a surplus
of this hormone on a patient who's not suffering from any HGH deficiency can
prove harmful, even fatal, in the long run.
List Of Reputable HGH Supplements