Steroid 21 hydroxylase deficiency congenital adrenal hyperplasia.Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am. 2009 Dec; 38(4):699-718.EM
Steroid 21 hydroxylase deficiency is the most common form of congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH). The severity of this disorder depends on the extent of impaired enzymatic activity, which is caused by various mutations of the 21 hydroxylase gene. This article reviews adrenal steroidogenesis and the pathophysiology of 21 hydroxylase deficiency. The three forms of CAH are then discussed in terms of clinical presentation, diagnosis and treatment, and genetic basis. Prenatal diagnosis and treatment are also reviewed. The goal of therapy is to correct the deficiency in cortisol secretion and suppress androgen overproduction. Glucocorticoid replacement has been the mainstay of treatment for CAH, but new treatment strategies continue to be developed and studied.