Eli Lilly's hormone, Humatrope, has been sold in the United States since 1987 and used for treating children with growth-hormone deficiencies. With the new approval, Indianapolis-based Lilly will be able to market Humatrope for short children with normal levels of the hormone and no evidence of a disease that stunts growth.
The FDA said it approved the treatment for the shortest 1.2 percent of children. For 10-year-old boys and girls, that would correspond to a height of less than 4 feet 1 inch. Their expected adult height without treatment would be less than 5 feet 3 inches for men and 4 feet 11 inches for women. [...]
An advisory committee in June voted 8-2 to recommend approving Humatrope for the new use after debating whether children who are otherwise healthy should be given multiple injections every week for years in order to grow what may amount to a few inches. At that meeting, Lilly argued that short children often face teasing and bullying, as well as social isolation as adults, and therefore needed a treatment option.
U.S. Clears New Use for Lilly Growth Hormone
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