Article

Update on the diagnosis and management of hypophysitis

The Pituitary Center, Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, California, USA.
Current opinion in endocrinology, diabetes, and obesity (Impact Factor: 3.77). 04/2012; 19(4):314-21. DOI: 10.1097/MED.0b013e32835430ed
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To discuss the multiple forms of hypophysitis, the various methods of classification, the recent findings in pituitary autoimmunity and novel methods of treating resistant or recurrent hypophysitis. (January 2010-December 2011).
Multiple novel presentations of hypophysitis have been described including cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen-4 antibody-related hypophysitis, an adverse event associated with a novel treatment for cancer, Food and Drug Administration approved for use in the treatment of metastatic melanoma. A rare, but newly described entity of immunoglobulin G4 related plasmacytic hypophysitis has been described and reviewed. Multiple investigations addressing the role of autoimmunity in the diagnosis and pathogenesis of hypophysitis have been reported with positive antipituitary antibodies found in patients with autoimmune hypophysitis, other autoimmune diseases, and nonimmune-related pituitary diseases. Several case series and case reports present new associations with concomitant diseases and novel therapy for cases requiring treatment when standard therapy fails or is contraindicated.
Hypophysitis is a rare disease with multiple subtypes. The description of hypophysitis related to cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen-4 antibody treatment is one of the first descriptions of hypophysitis triggered by medication. As the use of this novel treatment for cancer increases, so must our awareness of immune-related adverse effects and their treatment. Pituitary autoimmunity is a challenging field with multiple discoveries reported to help further our understanding of the disease and assist in diagnosis. Insufficient sensitivity and specificity of the currently reported methods prevents recommending measurement of antipituitary antibodies as standard of care in the diagnosis of hypophysitis. The treatment of hypophysitis remains controversial with recommendations ranging from hormonal replacement to newly described therapies such as azathioprine and radiation.

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