The human body undergoes many changes throughout its lifetime, many occurring due to aging when fluctuating hormone levels begin to decline. For some men and women, the alterations in hormones such as testosterone, estrogen, progesterone, DHEA, insulin growth factor 1, and somatotropin (growth hormone) can have far-reaching consequences.
In this review, we look at one particular hormonal deficiency, and one of the medications that treat it – Saizen human growth hormone (HGH). We will discuss the function of both growth hormone (GH) and Saizen, as well as its description, what it’s used for, the indications and contraindications for use, how it’s supplied, and basic instructions for use.
The manufacturer of Saizen HGH is EMD Serono, a well-known and respected pharmaceutical company that produces a few different brands of human growth hormone. While Saizen treats growth hormone deficiency (GHD) in adults and children, other brands of HGH produced by EMD Serono have specific uses, such as:
- Serostim – HIV/AIDS patients with cachexia or wasting
- Zorbtive – for patients with short bowel syndrome
Adult GHD is very different from what we see in children. When a youngster does not have enough growth hormone, he or she will experience slow growth and development. In adults, a shortage of GH results in decreased cellular regeneration and cell growth. Because the body requires an abundance of new cells each day, it may experience the following problems associated with GHD in adults:
- Loss of muscle mass, also resulting in decreased strength and less protection for the bones
- Reduced bone density, increasing the risk of osteoporosis and fractures
- Decreased collagen and elastin production, causing the skin to become thin and dry, increasing the appearance of wrinkles, sagging, and cellulite
- Shorter hair growth cycle, with new strands growing in thinner, more brittle, and falling out faster – hair also loses its color due to a lack of melanocytes
- Nails becoming dry, thin, and brittle, susceptible to cracking, peeling, and chipping
- Internal organs shrinking, resulting in decreased functions
Those are only a few of the many effects of GHD in adults. We will discuss other concerns in the indications section below.
Saizen is a brand of human growth hormones used to treat the symptoms of growth hormone deficiency in adults and children.
Saizen is a brand of somatropin, a medication that has the same molecular structure as pituitary secreted growth hormone. It is produced through a process known as recombinant DNA technology, which results in a bioidentical protein peptide containing the same 191 amino acid residues in a single chain as somatotropin.
Doctors specializing in hormone replacement therapy for adults prescribe Saizen to increase the amount of growth hormone in the body available for the GH receptors to use.
Saizen contains the same 191 amino acid sequence as naturally produced growth hormone.
Hormone replacement is a complex therapy due to the fact that once you adjust one hormone in the body, it may have ramifications for others. Doctors must use extreme care when prescribing HGH treatment.
Saizen is indicated for use by adults diagnosed with growth hormone deficiency due to any of the following reasons:
- Continuation of childhood-onset GHD
- Congenital or genetic causes
- Brain trauma
- Tumor of the hypothalamus or pituitary gland, or treatment of the same (surgery, radiation)
- Pituitary disease
- Hypothalamic disease
- Certain illness, conditions, or medications
- Age-related decline resulting in GHD symptoms
- Substance abuse
- Undiagnosed causes
A sedentary lifestyle that lacks exercise, stress, being overweight, and not getting enough sleep can all interfere with growth hormone production.
As previously stated, the necessity for Saizen usage in adults differs from that in children. Cellular regeneration is only one aspect of growth hormone’s function in the adult body. GH is also responsible for stimulating the production of insulin growth factor 1 (IGF-1) and testosterone. IGF-1 production stimulation in the liver is especially crucial as it is the mediator for many of growth hormone’s functions, especially cellular regeneration.
Other indications for the need for Saizen by adults are the following signs of GHD:
- Trouble sleeping and daytime fatigue
- Sluggish metabolism, weight gain, insulin resistance, elevated blood glucose levels
- Impaired immune system functions, frequent illness, slow healing and recovery
- Sensitivity to changes in temperature
- Trouble focusing
- Slow or impaired learning and poor memory recall
- Depression, mood swings, stress, anxiety, and irritability
- Decreased desire for socialization and hobbies
- Reduced drive and productivity
- Loss of libido, impaired sexual functions
- High cholesterol levels
- Heart conditions – many adults with cardiovascular disease have a higher risk of GHD
Saizen provides benefits for adults suffering from the signs of growth hormone deficiency.
While HGH therapy is safe for most adults diagnosed with growth hormone deficiency, there are times when Saizen should not be used. Doctors require a consultation, blood analysis, physical exam, and thorough review of a person’s medical history to ensure there are no contraindications that would render HGH therapy unsafe to use.
The following list highlights the most common contraindications for Saizen:
- Malignancy, cancer, tumor
- Diabetic retinopathy (proliferative or preproliferative)
- Untreated thyroid hormone deficiency
- Allergy (hypersensitivity) to ingredients in Saizen
- Acute critical illness resulting from complications due to multiple accidental trauma, open heart or abdominal surgery
- Severe breathing difficulties
Although not contraindicated, it is imperative to discuss any of the following with the prescribing doctor before using Saizen HGH therapy:
- Prior cancer history (self or family)
- Sleep apnea
- Pregnancy or planning to become pregnant
- Thyroid conditions or treatments
- Adrenal gland problems
- Liver or kidney disease, transplant, or issues
- All medications, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and supplements (see drug interactions, below)
Provide a thorough medical history, including all over-the-counter medications and supplements to the doctor before using Saizen.
EMD Serono offers Saizen HGH in the following forms:
- Vial (5 And 8.8 Mg)
Saizen in both the 5 and 8.8 mg vials use insulin-sized syringes and needles to inject the HGH medication subcutaneously (under the skin) after reconstitution with bacteriostatic solution
- Saizen one.click Pen
The Saizen one.click pen uses 8.8 mg vials of HGH powder and diluent cartridges mixed in the click.easy reconstitution or the saizenprep mixing device
- Saizen easypod
The Saizen easypod is a unique auto-inject delivery system that utilizes the 8.8 mg HGH cartridges and hides the needle from view
Saizen HGH can be used with standard insulin syringes and needles or convenient injector pen devices.
Instructions for Use
The instructions for using Saizen will vary slightly depending on which injection delivery system you purchase. Please refer to the directions that comes with your Saizen HGH kit. We will also supply links for online videos that demonstrate the preparation and injection process. Our medical advisors are also available via phone call to walk you through the process.
Before reconstitution, store Saizen at room temperature
After reconstitution, store Saizen in the refrigerator as follows:
- Vials – up to 14 days
- Saizenprep cartridges – up to 21 days
Saizen supplied in vials for use with syringes includes bacteriostatic water containing benzyl alcohol for reconstitution
The Saizenprep device uses a diluent cartridge containing metacresol in sterile water
Effects of Usage
Side effects from medically prescribed Saizen are rare. The most common reactions include redness, irritation, itching, pain, or swelling at the injection site. Other possible side effects of HGH therapy include:
- Fluid retention (edema)
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Insulin resistance
- Joint, nerve, or muscle pain
- Cold or flu-like symptoms
- Back pain
- High cholesterol
Warnings & Precautions
Do not use Saizen HGH injections if any of the contraindications listed above are present. The side effects listed typically resolve themselves within a few weeks as the body adjusts itself to higher growth hormone levels. If these reactions do not subside, or if they worsen or cause any concern, let the doctor know at once. Also, report any other side effects not listed as they may be signs of allergic reactions or potential problems with treatment. Remember, when in doubt, contact the hormone clinic.
Use only the dosage of HGH prescribed by the doctor. Do not change the dosing or frequency of administration without medical authorization. Only use Saizen under doctor supervision, and do not purchase or use any HGH injections without a prescription. Buy HGH only from licensed US clinics to ensure safety and quality.
- Insulin and other diabetes drugs
- Cytochrome P450 3A4 hepatic enzymes
- Steroids or glucocorticoids
- Oral estrogen
Please contact our hormone clinic for a free consultation by phone to learn more about Saizen HGH therapy for adults, including diagnostic testing, treatment options, and assistance programs that may help with the cost of the medication.