Addison’s disease and empty sella
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A 47-year-old woman affected by Addison’s disease, inadequately treated with corticosteroids for 14 yr, was referred to our clinic. As a x-ray of skull revealed an enlarged sella turcica, a more thorough study of hypothalamic-pituitary function and of the sellar region was performed. The normal suppression of high plasma ACTH levels induced by hydrocortisone infusion and the normal pattern of ACTH, TSH, PRL, LH and FSH to appropriate stimuli (CRH, TRH, GnRH) excluded the possible existence of an ACTH-secreting adenoma; the CT scan images showed the presence of an empty sella. The impaired GH rise after GHRH may be attributed to either the empty sella or the adrenal failure. This is the first patient with Addison’s disease and empty sella, in whom the hypothalamic-pituitary function has been studied by the administration of four releasing hormones.
KeywordsAddison’s disease empty sella ACTH sellar enlargement
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