Adenohypophyseal hormone levels in the cerebrospinal fluid of patients with pituitary disease
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Measurement of adenohypophyseal hormones in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) was recently proposed as an useful procedure to differentiate pituitary intra and extrasellar tumors. So far, data reported are conflicting. We measured the concentrations of GH, TSH, FSH, LH and PRL in CSF and plasma in 30 controls and in 37 patients with various pituitary diseases (18 intrasellar adenomas, 14 extrasellar adenomas and 5 empty sella syndromes). The concentrations of exam-ined hormones in CSF were very low or undetectable in all control subjects. In most patients with pituitary tumors, adenohypophyseal hormones were found to be present in CSF, in great amounts. No significant differences were found between intra and extrasellar tumors. In agreement with recently reported data, no significant correlation was found between GH, TSH, FSH and LH levels in CSF and plasma, while a significant correlation (p<0.01) was obtained between CSF and plasma levels of PRL, either in all patients or in those with extrasellar tumors only. All patients bearing an empty sella had PRL detectable in CSF: in 2 cases PRL levels were very high. In conclusion our data do not confirm that measurement of adenohypophyseal hormones in CSF represents an useful screening to differentiate tumors with extrasellar extension. PRL data deserve interest in order to gain understanding of the hormone dynamics between CSF and vascular compartments.
Key-wordsPituitary hormones CSF pituitary tumors empty sella
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