Background: According to neuroradiological findings, empty sella seems to be deprived
of pituitary tissue in sella turcica. Changing size of the pituitary volume is closely related to the occurrence
of primary empty sella. The aim of the study is to determine pituitary dysfunction in patients
with partial or total primary empty sella and the significance of pituitary volume measurements
in these patients.
Methods: This study was designed retrospectively. 67 patients (55 females, 12 males) diagnosed
with primary empty sella syndrome between the years of 2015-2019 were included in the study. Patients
were divided into two groups: partial (PES) and total (TES) empty sella by magnetic resonance
imaging (MRI). Basal anterior pituitary and its hormones were assessed. We also included
26 healthy control subjects (19 females, 7 males) to compare the differences in pituitary volumes.
Volumes were measured by using Osirix Dicom Viewer (Pixmeo SARL, Geneve, Swiss) in 3.0
Tesla scanner MRI.
Results: 82.1% (n=55) of all patients were PES and the others were (n=12) TES. Hypopituitarism,
known as one or more pituitary hormones deficiency, was found in 12 patients (17.9%). While 9 of
them had total PES, the others had partial PES. Secondary adrenal insufficiency and gonadotropin
deficiency were more prevalent in patients with TES. Mean volume measurements of patients with
TES, PES and healthy subjects were 0.23±0.17, 0.35±0.15, 0.54±0.17 cm3, respectively. Except for
IGF1 values (p=0.026), there was not any significant correlation found between the anterior pituitary
hormones and volume measurements.
Conclusion: Although volume measurement has helped in the diagnosis of pituitary empty sella
(partial or total), it does not seem to have any significant correlation with pituitary secretory function.