Somatostatin Octapeptide in the Medical Treatment of Acromegaly
Somatostatin lowers growth hormone (GH) in patients with acromegaly but it has a short half life in the circulation and thus cannot be used for medical treatment. Recently an octapeptide analogue (SMS 201–995) of somatostatin has been developed with a much longer half-life and which has clear therapeutic potential in patients with growth hormone secreting tumors.
Somatostatin octapeptide causes the suppression of growth hormone for 3, 5 and 9 hours after 50, 100 and 200 μg respectively. 400 μg subcutaneously caused even longer growth hormone suppression but there were side-effects seen in some patients. Long-term treatment with 100 μg, subcutaneously, twice daily caused growth hormone suppression in all patients studied but some escape was seen at the end of the 12-hour study period. When bromocriptine responses were compared to those of somatostatin in the same patients, somatostatin caused better growth hormone suppression in 7 out of 8 patients studied; addition of bromocriptine to somatostatin did not cause better growth hormone suppression in 4 out of the 5 patients studied than somatostatin octapeptide alone.
We conclude that somatostatin octapeptide is a significant advance in the medical treatment of acromegaly.
KeywordsGrowth Hormone Growth Hormone Level Growth Hormone Release Growth Hormone Suppression Octapeptide Analogue
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