Appetite-Stimulating Hormone is First Potential Medical Treatment for Frailty in Older Women, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine Study

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EurekAlert! -- PHILADELPHIA – Older women suffering from clinical frailty stand to benefit from the first potential medical treatment for the condition, according to a study presented today by Penn Medicine researchers at ENDO, The Endocrine Society's 91st Annual Meeting. Ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates appetite, was administered to older women diagnosed with frailty, a common geriatric syndrome characterized by unintentional weight loss, weakness, exhaustion and low levels of anabolic hormones which increases risk of falls, hospitalizations, disability, and death. Those who received ghrelin infusions consumed 51 percent more calories than the placebo group, with an increase in carbohydrate and protein intake, not fat. Their growth hormone levels were also higher throughout the ghrelin infusion.

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