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HGH Injections Side Effects: What You Need to Know

Written by Author - Authors Medical experts of the National HRT Clinic - October 21, 2015

Adults diagnosed with growth hormone deficiency (GHD) often receive human growth hormone (HGH) therapy to combat their symptoms. The treatment is safe, effective, and available here in the US by prescription. It is rare for adults to experience any HGH injections side effects when under a doctor’s care for treatment.

With that knowledge, there are still some risks associated with HGH therapy, just as with any other medication. Even over-the-counter preparations carry side effect warnings. That is why it is crucial that you both know and understand what could occur so that you can identify any potential adverse reactions should they occur.

What are the side effects of HGH injections going to do to adults?

Minor HGH injections side effects are easy to ignore, as they will often go away on their own. More severe side effects could lead to problems such as type 2 diabetes. The good news is that even if adverse reactions to HGH injections occur, stopping the treatment or lowering the dosage can typically reverse those issues.

HGH injections side effects rarely occur for most adults receiving treatment for growth hormone deficiency.

Do HGH Injections Always Cause Side Effects?

HGH injections side effects rarely occur when used as directed by a doctor to treat GHD. If anything, the most likely occurrence is some redness, swelling, itching, irritation, or pain at the injection site. Issues such as these at the injection site resolve themselves rather quickly.

The more likely reason for a person to experience HGH side effects is misuse, abuse, or illegal use of the medication. HGH therapy increases the amount of growth hormones in the adult body. That is a necessary feature for someone whose body does not produce enough of the hormone. However, for a person who has normal levels of growth hormone, HGH injections increase it too high, causing problems.

Another issue that can lead to trouble is the purchase of illegal HGH injections from unregulated companies. Counterfeit HGH shipped into the US from overseas may contain bacterial residue, toxic ingredients, or be an entirely different type of medication. These products can cause serious health issues for the user.

Some foreign and unregulated companies ship medications that are expired or diluted. The side effects of expired HGH injections may not be as severe as with counterfeit or tainted products, but they could still create problems.

Another issue is that expired, and diluted HGH injections will not produce superior results. A person who truly needs the benefits of HGH therapy may give up thinking it does not work when the whole reason is inferior medication.

Most Common Side Effects of HGH Injections in Men and Women

The side effects of HGH injections on women are no different from those that occur with men. Any adult who increases growth hormone levels too high or too fast is subject to the HGH injections side effects listed below:

  • Nerve, joint, or muscle pain
  • Fluid retention
  • Swelling in the legs or arms
  • Insulin resistance
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Headaches

One of the gender-specific HGH injections side effects in men is gynecomastia – male breast tissue enlargement.

Which Side Effects of HGH Injections Are Short-Term?

Almost all side effects of HGH injections are typically short-term issues. The first two to three weeks of treatment encompass an adjustment period when the body is getting used to having more growth hormone in the bloodstream.

If HGH injections side effects do occur, you may want to wait a couple of weeks to see if they go away on their own. If they do not, or they worsen, check with the doctor to see if it is necessary to lower the HGH dosage for a short time.

In older adults, the doctor will likely start with a lower HGH dosage to allow for that adjustment period, raising the dosage in increments until reaching the ideal treatment level.

Are There Any Long-Term Side Effects of HGH Injections?

HGH injections long-term side effects may occur in people who abuse this medication illegally. Consistently administering more HGH than the body needs can lead to type 2 diabetes.

Another potential issue for someone who uses HGH without doctor authorization is cancer. Hormone specialists run blood tests to screen for possible problems before prescribing HGH therapy. Since growth hormone stimulates cell reproduction, it could potentially increase tumor growth. The best way to avoid any HGH injections side effects such as these is to get a complete blood screening and physical examination before using injectable human growth hormones.

Are there side effects of stopping HGH injections?

Stopping HGH also requires doctor-supervision. Some people may experience a return of their growth hormone deficiency symptoms if they do not take steps to increase GH production. Our medical professionals here at National HRT hormone clinic can help guide you through the end of your treatment.

How Can I Decrease the Risk of HGH Injections Side Effects?

The best way to decrease the risk of side effects to HGH injections is to follow the doctor’s instructions for use. By administering only the amount of HGH that your body needs, you should have no problems with HGH therapy.

If you do experience any HGH injections side effects, please contact the doctor to discuss the situation. A temporary lowering of your dosage – only under physician supervision – can reverse those issues.

For more information, please contact National HRT for a free telephone consultation.

Medically reviewed by   Reviewers National HRT Staff - Updated on August 17, 2020

Please note that the information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.