Hypopituitarism induced by traumatic brain injury in the transition phase
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Traumatic brain injury (TBI) has been associated with hypopituitarism in general and GH deficiency (GHD) in particular; the consequences of this on growth and development are likely to be critical in children and adolescents in the so-called “transition phase”. In order to verify the consequences of TBI on pituitary function in the transition phase, we studied a population of adolescents and young adults 3 and 12 months after brain injury [no.=23, 9 females, 14 males; age: 16-25 yr; body mass index (BMI): 21.9±0.6 kg/m2]. At 3 months, hypopituitarism was present in 34.6%. Total, multiple and isolated deficits were present in 8.6, 4.3 and 21.7%, respectively. Diabetes insipidus (DI) was present in 8.6% patients and mild hyperprolactinemia in 4.3%. At 12 months, hypopituitarism was present in 30.3%. Total, multiple and isolated deficits were present in 8.6, 4.3 and 17.4%, respectively. DI was present in 4.3% of patients and mild hyperprolactinemia in 4.3%. Total hypopituitarism was always confirmed at retesting. Multiple and isolated hypopituitarism were confirmed in 0/1 and 2/5, respectively. Two/23 patients showed isolated hypopituitarism at 12 months only; 1 patient with isolated at 3 months showed multiple hypopituitarism at retesting. GHD and secondary hypogonadism were the most common acquired pituitary deficits. These results show the high risk of TBI-induced hypopituitarism also in the transition age. Thus it is recommended that pediatric endocrinologists follow-up pituitary function of children and adolescents after brain injuries.
Key-wordsTraumatic brain injury hypopituitarism adolescence transition phase
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