Human growth hormone given to short but otherwise normal children can have profound effects upon their body metabolism.
A group of smaller than average children given daily injections of growth hormone for six months lost three quarters of their fat mass and increased lean body mass by one quarter."The children became skinny, with obvious loss of adipose tissue from all areas of the body but especially from the limbs and face," said the report. "The girls in particular looked inappropriately muscular.
"The possibility that [human growth hormone] produces profound metabolic effects should limit its use in otherwise healthy children until the mechanism of action is more clearly elucidated," concluded the authors.