Endocrine Society issues new guidelines on hypopituitarism

The Endocrine Society today issued a Clinical Practice Guideline that recommends treating insufficient hormone levels in individuals with hypopituitarism by replacing hormones at levels as close to the body’s natural patterns as possible.

The guideline, titled “Hormonal Replacement in Hypopituitarism in Adults: An Endocrine Society Clinical Practice Guideline,” was published online and will appear in the November 2016 print issue of The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM), a publication of the Endocrine Society.

Hypopituitarism, or pituitary insufficiency, occurs when the pituitary gland does not produce sufficient amounts of hormones–the chemical signals that regulate respiration, reproduction, growth, metabolism, sexual function and other important biological functions. The pituitary gland is often called the master gland because the hormones it produces impact many bodily functions. As a result, hypopituitarism can cause a range of symptoms, according to the Hormone Health Network.

The rare disorder can occur due to abnormal development or later in life as a result of a tumor, traumatic brain injury, hemorrhage or autoimmune condition, according to the Society’s

“Hypopituitarism can manifest as low levels of a variety of hormones, including cortisol, thyroid hormone, estrogen, testosterone and growth hormone,” said Maria Fleseriu, MD, FACE, of Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, OR. Fleseriu chaired the task force that developed the guideline. “The goal of treatment should be to restore hormone levels as close to healthy levels as possible The interactions between these hormones also are very important, and patients might require dose changes of one or more of the replacement hormones after starting or discontinuing another one.”

In recommending treatment options, the guideline task force followed the overriding principle of using hormone replacement therapy dose size and timing to mimic the body’s natural functioning as closely as possible.

Accurate and reliable measurements of hormones play a central role in diagnosing hypopituitarism and monitoring the effectiveness of treatments, Fleseriu said. Healthcare providers need to keep in mind technical considerations to ensure the testing procedure is as accurate as possible.

The guideline addresses special circumstances that may affect the treatment of patients with hypopituitarism, including pregnancy care, post-surgical care following pituitary or other operations, treatment in combination with anti-epilepsy medication, and care following pituitary apoplexy–a serious condition that occurs when there is bleeding into the gland or blood flow to it is blocked.

Recommendations from the guideline include:

  • Measurements of both free thyroxine and thyroid-stimulating hormone are needed to evaluate central hypothyroidism, a condition where the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones because it isn’t stimulated by the pituitary gland.
  • People who have central hypothyroidism should be treated with levothyroxine in doses sufficient to raise levels of the thyroid hormone free thyroxine to the upper half of the reference range.
  • Growth hormone stimulation testing should be used to diagnose patients with suspected growth hormone deficiency.
  • People who have proven cases of growth hormone deficiency and no contraindications should be offered growth hormone replacement as a treatment option.
  • Premenopausal women who have central hypogonadism, a condition where the sex glands produce minimal amounts or no hormones, can undergo hormone treatment, provided there are no contraindications.
  • People producing abnormally large volumes of dilute urine should be tested for central diabetes insipidus–a rare condition that leads to frequent urination–by analyzing the concentration of their blood and urine.
  • For patients who have low levels of glucocorticoid hormones, hydrocortisone can be given in a daily single or divided dose.
  • All hypopituitarism patients should be instructed to obtain an emergency card, bracelet or necklace warning about the possibility of adrenal insufficiency.
  • Patients who are suspected of having an adrenal crisis due to secondary adrenal insufficiency should receive an immediate injection of 50 to 100 milligrams of hydrocortisone.
  • People who have central adrenal insufficiency should receive the lowest tolerable dose of hydrocortisone replacement on a long-term basis to reduce the risk of metabolic and cardiovascular disease.
Source:

The Endocrine Society

From http://www.news-medical.net/news/20161013/Endocrine-Society-issues-new-guidelines-on-hypopituitarism.aspx

Endocrine Society Releases Guidelines on Treatment of Cushing’s Syndrome

To lessen the risk for comorbidity and death, the Endocrine Society’s newly published guidelines on the treatment of Cushing’s syndrome focus on surgical resection of the causal tumor with the goal of normalizing cortisol levels. Furthermore, there is increased emphasis on individualizing treatment options when choosing a second-line treatment.

In July 2015, the Endocrine Society published treatment guidelines to assist endocrinologists in appropriately initiating treatment or referring patients with Cushing’s syndrome to treatment. A task force of experts compiled evidence from systematic reviews and graded the strength of the recommendations.

“We hope that it will lead to improved treatment of comorbidities both before and after definitive treatment of the syndrome, and to increased individualization of patient treatment,” said chair of the task force Lynnette Nieman, MD, who is chief of the Endocrinology Consultation Service at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center.

“There are two new drugs that were approved in 2012, and so I think that is what prompted the review. Still, medications are not the first line of treatment, but we have some new therapeutic options, and I think the idea was to help people understand where to use them,” Julie Sharpless, MD, assistant professor and director of the UNC Multidisciplinary Pituitary Adenoma Program, told Endocrinology Advisor.

“The primary treatment is surgical resection of the causal tumor(s). If that cannot be done (because the tumor is occult or metastatic) or is not successful, then the choice of secondary treatment should be individualized to the patient. The comorbidities of Cushing’s syndrome, for example hypertension and diabetes, should be treated separately as well,” Nieman said.

For example, the guidelines recommend surgical removal of the causative lesion, with the exception of cases which are unlikely to cause a drop in glucocorticoids or in patients who are not surgical candidates.

Likewise, in patients with benign unilateral adrenal adenoma, adrenalectomy by an experienced surgeon has a high rate of cure in children and adults. Because of the poor prognosis associated with adrenal carcinoma, the guidelines highlight the need for complete resection and possibly medical treatment to stabilize cortisol levels.

Other first-line treatment options include recommending surgical resection of ectopic ACTH-secreting tumors; referring to an experienced pituitary surgeon for transsphenoidal selective adenomectomy; treatments to block hormone receptors in bilateral micronodular adrenal hyperplasia; and surgical removal in bilateral adrenal disorders.

The elevated mortality rate seen in patients with Cushing’s syndrome is due to infection, venous thrombosis and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Appropriately lowering cortisol levels improves hypertension, insulin resistance, dyslipidemia and obesity in patients with Cushing’s syndrome. Therefore, the guidelines highlight the need for restoring cortisol levels and treating the associated comorbidities.

Nevertheless, the task force specifically recommends against treatment without an established diagnosis or when there are no signs of Cushing’s syndrome and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal laboratory studies are borderline.

In patients who are not surgical candidates or in cases of noncurative resection, the decision on whether to consider second-line treatment options such as medical therapy, radiation, bilateral adrenalectomy or repeat transsphenoidal surgery should be based on several factors. For instance, the guidelines recommend taking into consideration location and size of the tumor, patient desires, goals of treatment and level of biochemical control.

The guidelines note medical therapy should be based on cost, efficacy and individualization of treatment. Endocrinologists can approach medical therapy with a goal of establishing normal cortisol levels or reducing cortisol levels to very low levels and replacing to achieve desired levels.

Remission in Cushing’s syndrome is associated with notable improvement; however, long-term follow-up is recommended for osteoporosis, CVD and psychiatric conditions.

After treatment, patients may experience reductions in weight, blood pressure, lipids and glucose levels that may allow reduction or discontinuation of medications. Even so, patients with a history of Cushing’s syndrome tend to have higher rates of hypertension, hyperlipidemia and diabetes. Likewise, rates of myocardial infarction are higher in this population, further emphasizing the need for treatment and management of diabetes and hypertension.

Sharpless highlighted that Cushing’s syndrome is rare.

“There are multiple studies that have shown that patients do better when they are treated in a specialty center where people see a lot of cases of this. So in that sense, treatment is not usually going to fall to the general practitioner,” she said.

She continued that the guidelines are helpful and provide guidance to endocrinologist who “can’t readily refer their patient to a pituitary center.”

Sharpless went on to describe the multidisciplinary care involved in Cushing’s syndrome including endocrinologists, neurosurgeons, radiologists, counselors and radiation oncologist.

“When the care is complicated, you want to ensure all of your providers have reviewed your case together and figured out the best plan.”

The guidelines were co-sponsored by the European Society of Endocrinology. Nieman received salary support for her work on the manuscript from the Intramural Research Program of the Eunice Kennedy Shiver Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Members of the task force reported multiple disclosures.

Reference

  1. Nieman LK et al. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2015;100(8):2807-2831.

From http://www.endocrinologyadvisor.com/adrenal/cushings-syndrome-endocrine-society-guidelines/article/434307/

Day 1 Coverage of ENDO 2015

ENDO_2015

 

Late-breaking Neuroendocrinology and Pituitary I

6-month interim safety and efficacy of different dose levels of TransCon HGH administered once weekly versus standard daily human growth hormone replacement therapy in pre-pubertal children with GHD
P Chatelain, O Malievsky, K Radziuk, HH Elsedfy, E Mikhailova, M Beckert


OR01-Clinical Issues in Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes

Metformin as an adjunct therapy does not improve glycemic control among overweight adolescents with type 1 diabetes (T1D)
I Libman, KM Miller, LA DiMeglio, K Bethin, ML Katz, A Shah, JH Simmons, MJ Haller, S Raman, WV Tamborlane, J Coffey, AM Saenz, RW Beck


Patient-reported outcomes 1 year after randomization to laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding or intensive weight and diabetes management in obese patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus
DC Simonson, SA Ding, F Halperin, M Wewalka, K Foster, K Kelly, J Panosian, A Goebel-Fabbri, O Hamdy, K Clancy, D Lautz, A Vernon, AB Goldfine


Undermanagement of hyperlipidemia in young persons with type 1 diabetes (T1D)
ML Katz, GH Telo, JB Cartaya, CE Dougher, M Ding, LM Laffel


OR01-Clinical Issues in Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes–Winner: Outstanding Abstract Award

18F-Flouride PET/CT and 18F-FDG labeled autologous leukocyte PET/CT for diagnosis of osteomyelitis in diabetic Charcot’s neuroarthropathy of foot
A Rastogi, A Bhansali


OR11-Thyroid Development, Clinical and Autoimmunity

Long-term outcomes and predictive factors of efficacy of ultrasound-guided ethanol injection for benign cystic thyroid lesions
E Papini, R Guglielmi, I Misischi, FM Graziano, A Persichetti, R Rendina, S Taccogna, G Bizzarri


OR11-Thyroid Development, Clinical and Autoimmunity–Winner: Outstanding Abstract Award

Novel insights into the effects of maternal thyroid function on child IQ reveal detrimental effects of high FT4 levels
TIM Korevaar, M Medici, H Tiemeier, E Visser, TJ Visser, RP Peeters


Oral Presentations in Reproductive Science–Winner: Oral Abstract Award in Reproductive Science

Kisspeptin signaling in the amygdala modulates reproductive hormone secretion
AN Comninos, J Anastasovska, M Sahuri-Arisoylu, X Feng Li, S Li, M Hu, CN Jayasena1, MA Ghatei, SR Bloom, P Matthews, K O’Byrne, JD Bell, WS Dhillo


PP09-Acromegaly

Biochemical control is maintained with pasireotide LAR in patients with acromegaly: Results from the extension of a randomized phase III study (PAOLA)
MR Gadelha, MD Bronstein, T Brue, MG Coculescu, L De Marinis, M Fleseriu, M Guitelman, V Pronin, G Raverot, I Shimon, J Fleck, A Kandra, AM Pedroncelli, A Colao


THR 113-137-Testis Cells: Control, Regulation and Functions

Effects of testosterone level on lower urinary tract symptoms
ED Crawford, W Poage, A Nyhuis, DA Price, SA Dowsett, D Muram

Prolactin Measure Didn’t Help Localize Pituitary Adenoma

By: SHERRY BOSCHERT, Clinical Endocrinology News Digital Network

SAN FRANCISCO – Measurements of prolactin levels during inferior petrosal sinus sampling did not help localize pituitary adenomas in patients with Cushing’s disease in a study of 28 patients, contradicting findings from a previous study of 28 patients.

The value of prolactin measurements in tumor localization using inferior petrosal sinus sampling (IPSS) remains unclear and needs further study in a larger, prospective study, Dr. Susmeeta T. Sharma said at the Endocrine Society’s Annual Meeting. The current and previous studies were retrospective analyses.

Although IPSS has been considered the standard test in patients with ACTH-dependent Cushing’s syndrome to differentiate between ectopic ACTH secretion and Cushing’s disease, there has been controversy about its value in localizing adenomas within the pituitary gland once a biochemical diagnosis of Cushing’s disease has been made. Various studies that used an intersinus ACTH ratio of 1.4 or greater before or after corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) stimulation have reported success rates as low as 50% and as high as 100% for tumor location.

A previous retrospective study of 28 patients with Cushing’s disease reported that adjusting the ACTH intersinus gradient by levels of prolactin before or after CRH stimulation, and combining the prolactin-adjusted ACTH intersinus ratio, improved pituitary adenoma localization. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) alone correctly localized the pituitary adenoma in 17 patients (61%), a prolactin-adjusted ACTH intersinus ratio of at least 1.4 improved the localization rate to 21 patients (75%), and combining MRI and the prolactin-adjusted ACTH intersinus ratio improved localization further to 23 patients, or 82% (Clin. Endocrinol. 2012;77:268-74).

The findings inspired the current retrospective study. The investigators looked at prolactin levels measured in stored petrosal and peripheral venous samples at baseline and at the time of peak ACTH levels after CRH stimulation for 28 patients with Cushing’s disease and ACTH-positive pituitary adenomas who underwent IPSS in 2007-2013. The investigators calculated prolactin-adjusted values by dividing each ACTH value by the concomitant ipsilateral prolactin value. They used an intersinus ACTH ratio of 1.4 or greater to predict tumor location.

At surgery, 26 patients had a single lateral tumor (meaning its epicenter was not in the midline), 1 patient had a central microadenoma, and 1 patient had a macroadenoma, reported Dr. Sharma of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, Bethesda, Md.

MRI findings accurately identified the location of 21 of the 26 lateral tumors (81%), compared with accurate localization in 18 patients using either the unadjusted ACTH intersinus ratio or the prolactin-adjusted ACTH intersinus ratio (69% for each), she said.

Incorrect tumor localization occurred with one patient using MRI alone and seven patients using either ratio. In four patients whose tumors could not be localized by MRI, the uncorrected and prolactin-adjusted ratios localized one tumor correctly and three tumors incorrectly. Only MRI correctly localized the one central microadenoma.

“We did not find any difference in localization rates by measurement of prolactin during IPSS,” she said. The small size of the study and its retrospective design invite further research in a more robust study.

Dr. Sharma reported having no financial disclosures.

From Clinical Endocrinology News

What is the Best Approach to Suspected Cyclical Cushing Syndrome?

Strategies for Managing Cushing’s Syndrome With Variable Laboratory Data

Brew Atkinson, Karen R. Mullan

Disclosures

Clin Endocrinol. 2011;75(1):27-30.

 

Abstract

Cyclical Cushing’s syndrome is a pattern of hypercortisolism in which the biochemistry of cortisol production fluctuates rhythmically. This syndrome is often associated with fluctuating symptoms and signs. It is now being increasingly recognized. The phenomenon is important because it can, if not recognized, lead to errors in diagnosis and differential diagnosis of the syndrome and in assessment of therapeutic outcomes. The techniques and criteria, protocols and dynamic biochemical tools to detect cycling in patients with hypercortisolism are discussed as are the strategies for diagnosing and managing this important subgroup of patients with hypercortisolism.

Introduction

Cyclical Cushing’s syndrome (CS) is a pattern in hypercortisolism in which the biochemistry of cortisol production fluctuates rhythmically. This can also be associated with fluctuating symptoms and signs. This type of case was initially thought to be rare. However, it has recently been recognized as occurring much more frequently. The phenomenon is important because, if not recognized, it can lead to errors in diagnosis and differential diagnosis of the syndrome and in assessment of therapeutic outcomes. All of these can have very serious clinical consequences.

As a result of reading this article, it is hoped that readers will be better able to consider more carefully the risks associated with too wide a diagnostic trawl for the diagnosis of CS and the associated chances of finding some abnormality of steroid biochemistry.

In cases where the diagnosis is being strongly considered, the risks of not considering episodic secretion when laboratory results are discordant are discussed. Readers should be able to plan strategies to assess for variable and cyclical secretion and to use these in diagnosis, differential diagnosis and treatment assessments.

Read more here: What is the best approach to suspected cyclical Cushing syndrome?

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