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Cor Vasa. 1992;34(2):101-7.

Heart in pituitary diseases.

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  • 1IIIrd Department of Internal Medicine, Charles University, 1st School of Medicine, Prague, Czechoslovakia.


Of hormones secreted by the pituitary, a direct effect on cardiac metabolism and function is exerted only by growth hormone (GH). Its chronic overproduction in adulthood leads to acromegaly. The main cardiovascular manifestations of acromegaly are hypertension and cardiac hypertrophy. The paper summarizes the results of clinical research into the "acromegalic heart" in an internationally unique group of 78 patients with acromegaly on long-term follow-up. Both clinical findings and experimental data available in the literature indicate that cardiac hypertrophy is due to a direct effect of GH on the myocardium. Hypertension occurs in 50% of patients, has the nature of volume hypertension and exerts only an additive effect on the development of left ventricular hypertrophy. Once GH overproduction has been eliminated, cardiac hypertrophy and hypertension can be reversed to a certain stage, a finding highlighting the necessity of instituting treatment of acromegaly as early and as vigorous as possible.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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