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Department of Pediatrics, Bahonar Hospital, Alborz University of Medical Sciences, Karaj, Iran
Background: When the pituitary gland is not seen within the sella turcica on radiologic imaging studies, is called empty sella syndrome. It’s an infrequent finding in childhood, but is more frequently seen in girls than boys. Pituitary hormones deficiency is present in less than 10% of such cases. The single most common endocrine abnormalities noted in children with primary empty sella is growth hormone deficiency.
Case presentation: An 11.5-year-old girl was referred for evaluation of short stature. Her weight was 22kg and height 128 cm, which was -3.6 SD below the mean. She had also not any signs of breast development and puberty at this age. After ruling out systemic illness, the patient underwent specialized tests and radiologic evaluation. She was diagnosed to have GH deficiency by poor response to GH stimulation test, other endocrine evaluation revealed that LH, FSH and estradiol levels were prepubertal, and the rest pituitary hormone were all normal. MRI showed a partial empty sella on pituitary magnetic resonance imaging. On the above findings diagnosis of partial empty sella syndrome was made.
Conclusion: Empty sella is sometimes associated with pituitary hypofunction and is most often discovered during imaging studies. MRI or CT scans are useful in differentiating empty sella from other etiologies of pathologic short stature. Treatment involves replacing the hormones that are lacking.