Primary empty sella: differences and similarities between children and adults.Acta Paediatr. 1995 Dec; 84(12):1382-5.AP
To identify possible differences between empty sella in children and adults we studied 43 subjects (age 13.6 +/- 5.4 years, range 4.1-27 years) with hypothalamic-pituitary disorders and empty sella at magnetic resonance imaging. Pituitary function, presence of non-endocrine symptoms, perinatal history, sellar volume, pituitary height, midline or intrasellar anatomical abnormalities were evaluated. Twenty subjects had isolated growth hormone deficiency, 17 multiple pituitary hormone deficiency and 6 puberty disorders (3 precocious puberty, 2 idiopathic delayed puberty, 1 Kallmann syndrome). The group with multiple pituitary hormone deficiency had a higher percentage of subjects with complete empty sella, i.e. pituitary height < 2 mm (p = 0.016), or intrasellar anatomical abnormalities (p = 0.0002) than the other groups. The subjects with puberty disorders had a mean sellar volume higher than the other groups (p < 0.05). Apart from pituitary dysfunction, symptoms of the empty sella syndrome were infrequent (9.3% of cases) in our subjects. The age of our subjects, the frequent association between empty sella and pituitary dwarfism and the non-enlarged sellae suggest a different aetiology, perhaps congenital, for empty sella in our subjects. As in adults, empty sella may be associated with both pituitary hypo- and hyperfunction.