Some people will go to any length in order to stay looking younger for longer – and the so-called ‘Youth Jab’ is just one example.
The latest trend is for somatropin (also known as Genotropin) to be taken with many devotees claiming that it’s wonderful for the skin and hair – skin is said to become firmer and brighter and hair is said to become thicker. Users also claim that they sleep better and have more energy, and some even go as far as to claim that it reduces body fat and increases muscle mass.
So what exactly is somatropin? Somatropin is generally prescribed for people who are deficient in Human Growth Hormone (hGH). HGH is essential for body growth and is a substance which is produced naturally by most people. Production of hGH peaks around the age of 30 and then slowly starts to decline – for example a 20 year old will produce around 500 micrograms of hGH a day, whereas an 80 year old will produce around 25 micrograms.
Unfortunately, hGH is not a cosmetic and beauty wonder drug and there are strong side effects linked to it, including fluid retention, joint pain and diabetes amongst others. There are also no studies showing the efficacy of it’s anti-ageing properties therefore users may be taking the drug for no discernible reason.
Despite this, there is a small but growing number of devotees – with celebrities such as Courtney Love said to be fans (there are rumours that a bottle of Genotropin was found in a hotel recently vacated by the star). In most countries, hGH is a prescription-only drug therefore cosmetic devotees generally turn to the internet to buy the drug where a month’s supply typically costs around $1,200.