Quality of life after long-term biochemical control of acromegaly.

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swedish; seattle; washington


PURPOSE: To assess long-term quality of life (QoL) in patients with sustained biochemical control of acromegaly, comparing those receiving vs not receiving pharmacotherapy (primary analysis); to assess change in QoL over time (secondary analysis).

METHODS: Cross-sectional study, with a secondary longitudinal component, of 58 patients with biochemically controlled acromegaly. All had participated in studies assessing QoL years previously, after having undergone surgery ± radiotherapy. One cohort received medical therapy [MED (n = 33)]; the other did not [NO-MED (n = 25)]. QoL was assessed by the 36-Item-Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36), Acromegaly Quality of Life Questionnaire (AcroQoL), Gastrointestinal Quality of Life Index (GIQLI), Symptom Questionnaire, and QoL-Assessment of Growth Hormone Deficiency in Adults (QoL-AGHDA).

RESULTS: Mean (± SD) duration of biochemical control was 15.0 ± 6.4 years for MED and 20.4 ± 8.2 years for NO-MED (p = 0.007). 58% of subjects scored < 25% of normal on ≥ 1 SF-36 domain and 32% scored < 25% of normal on ≥ 4 of 8 domains. Comparing MED vs NO-MED and controlling for duration of biochemical control, there were no significant differences in QoL by SF-36, AcroQOL, GIQLI, Symptom Questionnaire, or QoL-AGHDA. Growth hormone deficiency (GHD) but not radiotherapy predicted poorer QoL. In MED, QoL improved over time in three AcroQoL domains and two GIQLI domains. In NO-MED, QoL worsened in two SF-36 domains and two Symptom Questionnaire domains; QoL-AGHDA scores also worsened in subjects with GHD.

CONCLUSION: A history of acromegaly and development of GHD, but not pharmacologic or radiotherapy, are detrimental to QoL, which remains poor over the long-term despite biochemical control.

Clinical Institute

Neurosciences (Brain & Spine)