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A retrospective analysis of data from more than 170 patients with Cushing syndrome and hyperglycemia provides insight into the effects of curative treatment on hyperglycemia among these patients. Irina Bancos, MD An analysis of retrospective data from a 20-year period details the impact of curative treatment on hyperglycemia among patients with Cushing syndrome. Led by a team of investigators from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, the study examined a cohort of 174 adult patients with Cushing Syndrome and determined 2-in-3 patients with hyperglycemia experienced resolution or improvement of hyperglycemia after a curative procedure. “This is the first study to analyze the quantitative changes based on the time from the curative surgery, to assess the changes in the intensity of hyperglycemia therapy and identify predictors for hyperglycemia improvement,” wrote investigators. A team led by Irina Bancos, MD, endocrinologist at the Mayo Clinic Rochester, designed the current study with an interest in examining the impact of curative procedures on hyperglycemia and its management in patients with Cushing syndrome from electronic medical record data of patients treated at a referral center from 2000-2019. The primary purpose of the study was to assess the impact of curative procedures on extent of hyperglycemia and the secondary aim was to investigators how baseline factors might influence improvement of hyperglycemia at follow-up. For inclusion in the analysis, patients needed to be at least 18 years of age, diagnosed with Cushing syndrome, and have hyperglycemia treated with a curative procedure from January 1, 2000-November 1, 2019. For the purpose of analysis, Cushing syndrome was diagnosed based on clinical evaluation by an endocrinologist and diagnosed according to the most recent guidelines. Hyperglycemia was defined according to American Diabetes Association guidelines. The primary outcome of interest for the study was the resolution of hyperglycemia following resolution of Cushing syndrome. For the purpose of analysis, resolution was defined as absence of hyperglycemia without the need for antihyperglycemic therapy. Secondary outcomes of interest included changes in HbA1c, and the intensity of hyperglycemia management. Overall, 174 patients were identified for inclusion in the study. This cohort had a median age of diagnosis of 51 (range, 16-82) years and 73% (n=127) were women. When assessing subtype of Cushing syndrome, the most common form was pituitary Cushing syndrome (60.9%), followed by ectopic (14.4%), and adrenal (24.7%). The median baseline HbA1c was 6.9% (range, 4.9-13.1), 24% of patients were not on any therapy for hyperglycemia, 52% were on oral medications, and 37% were on insulin (mean daily units, 58; range, 10-360). When assessing differences between subtypes, results indicated those with pituitary Cushing syndrome were younger at the time of surgery (P=.0009), and included more women (P=.0023), and reported a longer duration of symptoms prior to diagnosis. Investigators noted patients with pituitary Cushing syndrome also had the highest clinical severity score (P <.0001), but patients with ectopic Cushing syndrome had the highest biochemical severity score (P <.0001). Following Cushing syndrome remission and at the end of follow-up, which occurred at a median of 10.5 months, 21% of patients demonstrated resolution of hyperglycemia, 47% demonstrated improvement, and 32% had no change or worsening hyperglycemia. When assessing secondary end points, results indicate HbA1c decreased by 0.84% (P <.0001) and daily insulin dose decreased by a mean of 30 units (P <.0001). Further analysis indicated hypercortisolism severity score (severe vs moderate/mild: OR, 2.4; 95% CI, 1.1-4.9) and Cushing syndrome subtype (nonadrenal vs adrenal: OR, 2.9; 95% CI, 1.3-6.4) were associated with hyperglycemia improvement, but not type of hyperglycemia (diabetes vs prediabetes: OR, 2,1; 95% CI, 0.9-4.9) at the end of follow-up. “We demonstrated that almost 70% of patients with CS demonstrate either resolution or improvement in hyperglycemia following CS remission. As a group, patients demonstrate a decrease in HbA1c, and can be treated with less insulin and fewer non-insulin agents. Patients with more severe hyperglycemia, ACTH-dependent CS, and more severe CS are more likely to improve after surgery,” added investigators. This study, “The impact of curative treatment on hyperglycemia in patients with Cushing syndrome,” was published in The Journal of the Endocrine Society. From https://www.endocrinologynetwork.com/view/obesity-overweight-responsible-for-1-in-5-future-thyroid-cancers-in-australia
Some of the latest research advancements in the field of endocrinology presented at the Endocrine Society's virtual ENDO 2021 meeting included quantifying diabetic ketoacidosis readmission rates, hyperglycemia as a severe COVID-19 predictor, and semaglutide as a weight loss therapy. Below are a few more research highlights: More Safety Data on Jatenzo In a study of 81 men with hypogonadism -- defined as a serum testosterone level below 300 ng/dL -- oral testosterone replacement therapy (Jatenzo) was both safe and effective in a manufacturer-sponsored study. After 24 months of oral therapy, testosterone concentration increased from an average baseline of 208.3 ng/dL to 470.1 ng/dL, with 84% of patients achieving a number in the eugonadal range. And importantly, the treatment also demonstrated liver safety, as there were no significant changes in liver function tests throughout the 2-year study -- including alanine aminotransferase (28.0 ± 12.3 to 26.6 ± 12.8 U/L), aspartate transaminase (21.8 ± 6.8 to 22.0 ± 8.2 U/L), and bilirubin levels (0.58 ± 0.22 to 0.52 ± 0.19 mg/dL). Throughout the trial, only one participant had elevation of liver function tests. "Our study finds testosterone undecanoate is an effective oral therapy for men with low testosterone levels and has a safety profile consistent with other approved testosterone products, without the drawbacks of non-oral modes of administration," said lead study author Ronald Swerdloff, MD, of the Lundquist Research Institute in Torrance, California, in a statement. In addition, for many men with hypogonadism, "an oral option is preferred to avoid issues associated with other modes of administration, such as injection site pain or transference to partners and children," he said. "Before [testosterone undecanoate] was approved, the only orally approved testosterone supplemental therapy in the United States was methyltestosterone, which was known to be associated with significant chemical-driven liver damage." Oral testosterone undecanoate received FDA approval in March 2019 following a rocky review history. COVID-19 Risk With Adrenal Insufficiency Alarming new data suggested that children with adrenal insufficiency were more than 23 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than kids without this condition (relative risk 23.68, P<0.0001). This equated to 11 deaths out of 1,328 children with adrenal insufficiency compared with 215 deaths out of 609,788 children without this condition (0.828% vs 0.035%). These young patients with adrenal insufficiency also saw a much higher rate of sepsis (RR 21.68, P<0.0001) and endotracheal intubation with COVID-19 infection (RR 25.45, P<0.00001). Data for the analysis were drawn from the international TriNetX database, which included patient records of children ages 18 and younger diagnosed with COVID-19 from 60 healthcare organizations in 31 different countries. "It's really important that you take your hydrocortisone medications and start stress dosing as soon as you're sick," study author Manish Raisingani, MD, of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and Arkansas Children's in Little Rock, explained during a press conference. "This will help prevent significant complications due to COVID-19 or any other infections. A lot of the complications that we see in kids with adrenal insufficiency are due to inadequate stress dosing of steroids." And with kids starting to return back to in-person schooling, "parents should also be reeducated about using the emergency injections of hydrocortisone," Raisingani added. He noted that the COVID-19 complication rates were likely so high in this patient population because many had secondary adrenal insufficiency due to being on long-term, chronic steroids. Many also had comorbid respiratory illnesses, as well. Cushing's Death Risk In a systematic review and meta-analysis of 87 studies -- including data on 17,276 patients with endogenous Cushing's syndrome -- researchers found that these patients face a much higher death rate than those without this condition. Overall, patients with endogenous Cushing's syndrome faced a nearly three times higher mortality ratio (standardized mortality ratio 2.91, 95% CI 2.41-3.68, I2=40.3%), with those with Cushing's disease found to have an even higher mortality risk (SMR 3.27, 95% CI 2.33-4.21, I2=55.6%). And those with adrenal Cushing's syndrome also saw an elevated death risk, although not as high as patients with the disease (SMR 1.62, 95% CI 0.08-3.16, I2=0.0%). The most common causes of mortality among these patients included cardiac conditions (25%), infection (14%), and cerebrovascular disease (9%). "The causes of death highlight the need for aggressive management of cardiovascular risk, prevention of thromboembolism, and good infection control, and emphasize the need to achieve disease remission, normalizing cortisol levels," said lead study author Padiporn Limumpornpetch, MD, of the University of Leeds in England, in a statement. From https://www.medpagetoday.com/meetingcoverage/endo/91808