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[Neuroendocrine dysfunction and brain damage. A consensus statement].
Leal-Cerro A, et al. Endocrinol Nutr. 2009 Jun-Jul.
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Abstract
This consensus statement aims to enhance awareness of the incidence and risks of hypopituitarism in patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and/or brain hemorrhages among physicians treating patients with brain damage. The importance of this problem is related not only to the frequency of TBI but also to its prevalence in younger populations. The consequences of TBI are characterized by a series of symptoms that depend on the type of sequels related to neuroendocrine dysfunction. The signs and symptoms of hypopituitarism are often confused with those of other sequels of TBI. Consequently, patients with posttraumatic hypopituitarism may receive suboptimal rehabilitation unless the underlying hormone deficiency is identified and treated. This consensus is based on the recommendation supported by expert opinion that patients with a TBI and/or brain hemorrhage should undergo endocrine evaluation in order to assess pituitary function and, if deficiency is detected, should receive hormone replacement therapy.

PMID 19695511 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
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Consensus guidelines on screening for hypopituitarism following traumatic brain injury.

Review article
Ghigo E, et al. Brain Inj. 2005.
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Abstract
PRIMARY OBJECTIVE: The goal of this consensus statement is to increase awareness among endocrinologists and physicians treating patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI) of the incidence and risks of hypopituitarism among patients with TBI.

RATIONALE: TBI poses significant risk to the pituitary gland, leading to elevated risks of diabetes, hypopituitarism and other endocrinopathies. Signs and symptoms associated with hypopituitarism often mimic the sequellae of TBI, although the severity of symptoms is not necessarily related to the severity of the injury. Patients with TBI-induced hypopituitarism may benefit both physically and psychologically from appropriate hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Participants at this unique consensus meeting attempted to define and spearhead an approach to increase awareness of the risks of TBI-induced endocrinopathies, in particular growth hormone deficiency (GHD), and to outline necessary and practical objectives for managing this condition.

RECOMMENDATIONS: Systematic screening of pituitary function is recommended for all patients with moderate-to-severe TBI at risk of developing pituitary deficits. Patients with hypopituitarism benefit from appropriate hormonal replacement and prospects for rehabilitation of patients with TBI-induced hypopituitarism may be enhanced by appropriate HRT. Further exploration of this possibility requires: (1) active collaboration between divisions of endocrinology and rehabilitation at the local level to perform a screening of pituitary function in patients after TBI, (2) creation of a consultancy service by endocrine societies for use by rehabilitation centres, (3) development of continuing medical education (CME) programmes that can be offered as crossover training to the physicians who manage the care of patients with TBIs, (4) targeting of patient organizations with educational information for dissemination to patients and their families, (5) continued efforts to more clearly define the population at greatest risk of TBI-induced hypopituitarism and (6) monitor results of efficacy studies as they become available to evaluate whether and how much replacement therapy can improve the symptoms of individuals with TBI-induced hypopituitarism.

PMID 16195185 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
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Anterior hypopituitarism following traumatic brain injury.

Review article
Urban RJ, et al. Brain Inj. 2005.
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Abstract
PRIMARY OBJECTIVES: To review evidence that there exists a substantial sub-population of patients with endocrine disorders as a result of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and to underscore the importance of screening patients with TBI considered most at risk for hypopituitarism with the goal of attaining beneficial effects in terms of morbidity and quality of life.

DESIGN AND METHODS: Reviewed recent literature regarding the frequency of TBI-induced hypopituitarism.

MAIN OUTCOMES AND RESULTS: Studies by Kelly DF, Gaw Gonzalo IT, Cohan P, et al. Hypopituitarism following traumatic brain injury and aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage: A preliminary report. Journal of Neurosurgery 2000;93:743-751, Lieberman SA, Oberoi AL, Gilkison CR, et al. Prevalence of neuroendocrine dysfunction in patients recovering from traumatic brain injury. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 2001;86:2752-2756 and Aimaretti G, Ambrosio MR, Di Somma C, et al. Traumatic brain injury and subarachnoid haemorrhage are conditions at high risk for hypopituitarism. Screening study at 3 months after the brain injury, In press., found that about one-half to one-third of patients with TBI had anterior pituitary hormone deficiencies, including growth hormone (GH) deficiency in 15-21%, and subtle deficiencies in thyroid, adrenal and gonadal axes. One or more hormonal deficiencies produce diverse physical and psychological symptoms that may mimic symptoms attributed to brain trauma and may impair rehabilitation. A more general concern is the fact that hypopituitarism increases the risk of significant morbidity (e.g. ischaemic heart disease) and mortality (shortened life span).

CONCLUSIONS: To attain maximal improvement in mental and physical functioning as well as in quality of life for victims of TBI, it is crucial that anterior pituitary hormonal function be assessed. Appropriate hormone replacement therapy for those patients with both TBI and TBI-induced pituitary function impairment could, for the first time, allow treatment and correction of underlying causes of TBI sequelae rather than merely symptomatic treatment.

PMID 16094782 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
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Predictors of Hypopituitarism in Patients with Traumatic Brain Injury.

Silva PP, et al. J Neurotrauma. 2015.
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Abstract
Hypopituitarism may often occur in association with traumatic brain injury (TBI). Identification of reliable predictors of pituitary dysfunction is of importance in order to establish a rational testing approach. We searched the records of patients with TBI, who underwent neuroendocrine evaluation in our institution between 2007 and 2013. One hundred sixty-six adults (70% men) with TBI (median age: 41.6 years; range: 18-76) were evaluated at a median interval of 40.4 months (0.2-430.4).Of these, 31% had ≥1 pituitary deficiency, including 29% of patients with mild TBI and 35% with moderate/severe TBI. Growth hormone deficiency was the most common deficiency (21%); when body mass index (BMI)-dependent cutpoints were used, this was reduced to 15%. Central hypoadrenalism occurred in10%, who were more likely to have suffered a motor vehicle accident (MVA, p = 0.04), experienced post-traumatic seizures (p = 0.04), demonstrated any intracranial hemorrhage (p = 0.05), petechial brain hemorrhages (p = 0.017), or focal cortical parenchymal contusions (p = 0.02). Central hypothyroidism occurred in 8% and central hypogonadism in 12%; the latter subgroup had higher BMI (p = 0.03), were less likely to be working after TBI (p = 0.002), and had lower Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) scores (p = 0.03). Central diabetes insipidus (DI) occurred in 6%, who were more likely to have experienced MVA (p < 0.001) or sustained moderate/severe TBI (p < 0.001). Patients with MVA and those with post-traumatic seizures, intracranial hemorrhage, petechial brain hemorrhages, and/or focal cortical contusions are at particular risk for serious pituitary dysfunction, including adrenal insufficiency and DI, and should be referred for neuroendocrine testing. However, a substantial proportion of patients without these risk factors also developed hypopituitarism.

PMID 26413767 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
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Central adrenal insufficiency following traumatic brain injury: a missed diagnosis in the critically injured.

Fan E, et al. Childs Nerv Syst. 2017.

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Abstract
BACKGROUND: High-dose steroid administration is no longer recommended in the treatment of acute traumatic brain injury (TBI) as it failed to prove beneficial in improving patients’ outcome. However, a masked benefit of steroid administration in TBI management was that it provided corticosteroid replacement therapy in patients with TBI-related central adrenal insufficiency.

CASE PRESENTATION: We report the case of a 12-year-old boy who suffered a severe TBI from a motor vehicle accident that resulted in complete deficiency of anterior pituitary function. Central adrenal insufficiency was not ruled out by a near normal response to a low-dose ACTH test performed on D11.

CONCLUSION: Consideration should be given to the empirical treatment of TBI pediatric patients with stress doses of corticosteroids if injury to the hypothalamus or pituitary gland is possible until a formal assessment of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis can be made.

PMID 28721596 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]
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Biology of posttraumatic stress disorder.

Review article
Yehuda R. J Clin Psychiatry. 2001.
Authors
Yehuda R1.

Citation
J Clin Psychiatry. 2001;62 Suppl 17:41-6.
Abstract
Most biological findings in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are compatible with those of the chronic stress response, such as increased corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) concentrations, catecholamine depletion within the central nervous system, and reduced hippocampal volume. However, over the last 10 years, biological observations have been made in PTSD that are different from what has been typically associated with chronic stress, notably certain hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis findings. In particular, urinary and plasma cortisol levels are considerably lower in PTSD patients than in non-PTSD trauma survivors and normal controls. Furthermore, the circadian pattern of cortisol release from the adrenal glands follows a greater dynamic range in PTSD than in patients with major depression or in normal controls. The reduction in cortisol levels results from an enhanced negative feedback by cortisol, which is secondary to an increased sensitivity of glucocorticoid receptors in target tissues. This HPA axis alteration contrasts with the well-known chronic stress cascade in which CRF release results in erosion of negative feedback and down-regulation of glucocorticoid receptors. Sensitization of the HPA axis is consistent with the clinical picture of hyperreactivity and hyperresponsiveness in PTSD.

PMID 11495096 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
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Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal dysfunction in posttraumatic stress disorder.

Review article
Yehuda R, et al. Biol Psychiatry. 1991.
Authors
Yehuda R1, Giller EL, Southwick SM, Lowy MT, Mason JW.
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Citation
Biol Psychiatry. 1991 Nov 15;30(10):1031-48.

Abstract
Neuroendocrine studies examining the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis under baseline conditions and in response to neuroendocrine challenges have supported the hypothesis of altered HPA functioning in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, to date, there is much debate concerning the nature of HPA changes in PTSD. Furthermore, in studies showing parallel findings in PTSD and major depressive disorder there is controversy regarding whether the HPA alterations suggest a specific pathophysiology of PTSD, or, rather, reflect comorbid major depressive disorder. This review summarizes findings of HPA axis dysfunction in both PTSD and major depressive disorder, and shows distinct patterns of HPA changes, which are probably due to different mechanisms of action for cortisol and its regulatory factors.

PMID 1661614 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]