Researchers Find Hypopituitarism Is Less Frequent In TBI Patients Than Thought

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Many treatment guidelines for traumatic brain injury suggest doctors screen patients for hypopituitarism, but a new study suggests the rate of the growth hormone deficiency is actually low within the patient population. The researchers also found that the risk for bias in pituitary testing is also high, according to the report published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

The study evaluated 439 Danish adults who had been diagnosed with head trauma and 124 healthy control patients. All participants underwent assessment of GH secretion at a median of 2.5 years after traumatic brain injury.

Helio reports the results uncovered a low prevalence of GH deficiency among TBI patients in all tests, with only 1% of patients showing signs of GH deficiency on two tests.

“The study confirmed a high risk of bias in the management of pituitary testing of patients with [traumatic brain injury], and stresses the importance of a proper control group and stringent GH-testing including confirmatory testing, in cohorts with low a-priori likelihood of [GH deficiency] such as in [traumatic brain injury]. Our results question the evidence for newly introduced recommendations for routine pituitary assessment in [traumatic brain injury],” the researchers wrote.

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