An unusual case of hypopituitarism and transient thyrotoxicosis following asymptomatic pituitary apoplexy.

: Although pituitary function is often impaired in pituitary apoplexy, the development of thyrotoxicosis is rare. We describe an unusual case of hypopituitarism due to pituitary apoplexy coexisting with transient hyperthyroidism. A 74-year-old woman presented with severe fatigue, palpitation, appetite loss, hypotension, and hyponatremia. Endocrine studies showed hyperthyroidism and anterior pituitary hormone deficiencies. A magnetic resonance imaging suggested recent-onset pituitary apoplexy in a pituitary tumor, although the patient had no apoplectic symptoms such as headache and visual disturbance. Thyrotoxicosis and adrenal insufficiency worsened her general condition. Glucocorticoid supplementation improved her clinical symptoms and hyponatremia. Serum anti-thyrotropin receptor and thyroid-stimulating antibody titers were negative, and her thyroid function was spontaneously normalized without antithyroid medication, suggesting painless thyroiditis. Thereafter, her thyroid function decreased because of central hypothyroidism and 75 µg of levothyroxine was needed to maintain thyroid function at the euthyroid stage. The pituitary mass was surgically removed and an old hematoma was detected in the specimen. Considering that painless thyroiditis develops as a result of an autoimmune process, an immune rebound mechanism due to adrenal insufficiency probably caused painless thyroiditis. Although the most common type of thyroid disorder in pituitary apoplexy is central hypothyroidism, thyrotoxicosis caused by painless thyroiditis should be considered even if the patient has pituitary deficiencies. Because thyrotoxicosis with adrenal insufficiency poses a high risk for a life-threatening adrenal crisis, prompt diagnosis and treatment are critical.

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