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October 1957

Anabolic Effect of a New Synthetic Steroid on Nitrogen Metabolism After Operation

Author Affiliations

St. Louis
From the Department of Surgery, Washington University School of Medicine, and the Homer G. Phillips Hospital.

AMA Arch Surg. 1957;75(4):625-630. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1957.01280160135017

After any severe injury or major operation the rate of protein catabolism is increased. This catabolic period is usually self-limited but may be prolonged, in which case it may lead to significant protein deficiencies, particularly when the patient's appetite is poor.

The nitrogen deficit attendant upon the catabolic response to injury may be alleviated to some extent by increasing the intake of protein and other foods, but this is often difficult to do. Therefore, the reversal of this catabolic response by any method, thereby permitting the organism to retain nitrogen even with a limited intake, would have important nutritional benefits. Norethandrolone (17-α-ethyl-17-hydroxynorandrostenone; Nilevar) reportedly mitigates the protein catabolic response to injury. It has been studied as a part of a research program concerned with protein repletion at the Homer G. Phillips Hospital.

Method  Fifteen normally nourished patients in good general health scheduled to undergo elective complete abdominal hysterectomy were studied.

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