What is the role of pituitary studies in the workup of diabetes insipidus (DI)?

Updated: Mar 18, 2020
  • Author: Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD, FACP; Chief Editor: George T Griffing, MD  more...
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Measurement of circulating pituitary hormones other than ADH may be valuable after traumatic brain injury (TBI). In a study of 89 TBI patients, in which the patients’ hormonal function was evaluated at the time of injury and afterward (at 3, 6, and 12 months), Krahulik et al found primary hormonal dysfunction—including major deficits such as DI, growth hormone dysfunction, and hypogonadism—in 19 patients (21% of the cohort). [34]

The major deficits tended to occur in patients with the worst Glasgow Outcome Scale scores. Moreover, the occurrence of empty sella syndrome, as revealed on MRI scans, was highest in patients with deficits. The authors recommended that pituitary hormone testing be routinely performed within 6 months and 1 year after injury in patients who have sustained a moderate to severe TBI. [34]

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