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An Med Interna. 1991 Nov;8(11):537-41.

[Primary empty sella turcica: clinical aspects and hormonal study of 15 cases].

[Article in Spanish]

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  • 1Sección de Endocrinología, Hospital Obispo Polanco, Teruel.


The goal pursued has been to analyze clinical observations and hormonal studies of patients with empty sella turcica (EST), in order to review this disorder and determine if it can be considered a real syndrome. Fifteen patients with EST (3 men and 12 women) and mean age of 45.6 +/- 17.9 years have been prospectively studied. In the hypothalamus-hypophysis study, reserves of thyrotropin (TSH), prolactin (PRL), gonadotropins (FSH and LH), growth hormone (GH), adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) and cortisol were assessed. In addition, thyroid hormones and, for men, testosterone, were determined. The pathogenic mechanism was explained in two cases (13.3%). We registered headache in 10 patients, obesity in 8, arterial hypertension in 2 and diabetes mellitus in 2. Multiparity antecedent was found in 2 cases. The hormonal study was abnormal in two cases (40%). Most common abnormalities were hyperprolactinemia (3 cases), deficit of gonadotropins (3 cases), without coexisting both of them in any case, and deficit of GH (2 cases). EST is frequently associated with endocrine disfunction, although clinical implications are rare. The absence of common clinical manifestations in most cases questions the EST as a real syndrome.

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