Positively Aware Serostim


somatropin for injection

non-HIV: Injectable human growth hormone used for treating HIV-associated wasting in people on ART
Non-HIV Drug

Standard Dose

0.1 mg/kg via subcutaneous (under the skin) injection, which may be in the thigh, upper arm, abdomen, or buttock once daily at bedtime (up to 6 mg), rotating injection sites and avoiding scar tissue, bruises, and the navel. It is available in 4 mg, 5 mg, and 6 mg vials. The multi-use 4 mg vial is reconstituted with bacteriostatic (containing a biological or chemical agent that stops bacteria from reproducing) water for injection and may be refrigerated for up to 14 days after reconstitution. The single-use 5 mg and 6 mg vials are reconstituted with sterile water for injection and must be used immediately; after administering the dose, any unused portion should be discarded. Some loss of the dose can be expected (approximately 10%). Inject the water into the vial aiming for the glass wall. The vial should be swirled gently in a circular motion until solution is completely dissolved; it must be clear and colorless. Do not shake. Do not inject if solution is cloudy or contains particles.

Serostim is recombinant (made in a lab) human growth hormone for treatment of HIV wasting (unintentional loss of weight) or cachexia (general ill health resulting from emaciation), decreased lean body mass (muscle), and loss of physical endurance. Loss of muscle can be difficult to notice or diagnose. Serostim has been shown to increase HIV replication in the test tube; therefore, people must take anti-HIV therapy, known as HAART (or cART), in order to be prescribed Serostim.

Most common potential side effects include swelling (especially of the hands and feet), muscle pain, joint pain, numbness, and pain in extremities (the ends of limbs, especially the hands and feet), carpal tunnel syndrome (which would require discontinuation if unresolved by decreasing the number of doses), injection site reactions (pain, numbness, redness, or swelling), increased blood fat (triglycerides) and blood sugar (including new or worsening cases of diabetes, sometimes reversible upon stopping Serostim), nausea, and fatigue. More rarely, potential side effects include pancreatitis (watch for persistent severe abdominal pain) and intracranial hypertension (rise in pressure in the skull, with vision changes, headache, nausea, or vomiting). Serostim should be avoided by people who are acutely ill, have an active cancer, or have diabetic retinopathy (damage to one or both retinas). Since HIV-positive people may have an increased risk of developing new tumors, including from birthmarks or other moles, risks versus benefits of starting Serostim should always be discussed with your provider. Additionally, people with known malignancies should be carefully monitored, because Serostim may cause increased growth or malignancy changes.

Rotate injection sites to avoid injection site reactions. An injection training program is available; go to serostim.com/treatment-with-serostim or call 877-714-2947. Do not use while experiencing cancer or cancer treatment, serious injuries, severe breathing problems, certain eye diseases related to diabetes, or after critical illness due to complications of abdominal or open-heart surgery.


EMD Serono
(877) 714-AXIS (2947)


6 mg: 7 injections (usually a one-week supply) $5,297.04

Potential Side Effects and Toxicity

Potential Drug Interactions

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