The aim of this study was to determine the frequency and characteristics of severe GH deficiency (sGHD) in patients after treatment of acromegaly by surgery alone.
Design and methods
One hundred and eighty-six patients fulfilling the criteria for cure of acromegaly were examined by GH-releasing peptide-2 stimulation test or arginine stimulation test as well as oral glucose tolerance test (GTT). In addition, the Japanese adult hypopituitarism questionnaire was completed to determine the quality of life (QoL).
sGHD was found in 17 patients (9.1%; the GH-deficient group), and not found in 169 patients (90.9%; the GH-sufficient group). There were no significant differences in preoperative serum GH levels, IGF1 levels, incidence of hyperprolactinemia, tumor volumes, or incidence of microadenoma between the two groups. Upon follow-up examination, IGF1 levels and Z-scores of IGF1 levels were significantly lower in the GH-deficient group than in the GH-sufficient group, whereas neither basal GH levels nor nadir GH levels during 75 g GTT were significantly different between the two groups. Moreover, sGHD patients had a substantially higher incidence of multiple pituitary failures (17.6 vs 2.4%) and dyslipidemia (60 vs 16.2%). sGHD patients had a substantially poorer condition-related QoL.
This is the first large-scale, single-center, clinical study to evaluate sGHD in patients after cure of acromegaly by surgery alone. This study found that sGHD occurred in ∼9% of patients and assessment of GHD by stimulation tests is critical after successful treatment of acromegaly by surgery.