Cushing syndrome in the McCune-Albright syndrome

Rebecca J Brown, Marilyn H Kelly, Michael T Collins
Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 2010, 95 (4): 1508-15

CONTEXT: Cushing syndrome (CS) is a rare but potentially fatal feature of McCune-Albright syndrome (MAS). Optimal management, prognostic features, and long-term follow-up of this disorder have not been described.

SETTING: The study was conducted at an academic tertiary care center.

PATIENTS: A total of 112 patients participating in a natural history study at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) were evaluated, and 21 published cases were reviewed.

INTERVENTIONS: Subjects received observation, medical management, or bilateral adrenalectomy.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: We measured prevalence, prognostic factors, and natural history.

RESULTS: The prevalence of CS among NIH patients was 7.1%. The median age at diagnosis was 3 months. Clinical features included "Cushingoid facies" (66.7%), failure to thrive (60.0%), low birth weight (50.0%), liver disease (36.7%), and heart disease (26.7%). Six patients (20.0%) died, four after adrenalectomy. Death was more likely in patients with comorbid heart disease (odds ratio, 13.3; P < 0.05). Of 23 survivors, 13 underwent adrenalectomy, and 10 exhibited spontaneous resolution. Two patients with spontaneous resolution who were tested later in life (3 and 15 yr after resolution) continued to have low-level, autonomous adrenal function with biochemical adrenal insufficiency. Compared to MAS patients without CS, patients with CS were more likely to have a cognitive/developmental disorder (44.4 vs. 4.8%; P < 0.001; odds ratio, 8.8).

CONCLUSIONS: Comorbid heart and liver disease were poor prognostic markers and may indicate the need for prompt adrenalectomy. The high incidence of cognitive disorders indicates a need for close developmental follow-up and parental counseling. Patients with spontaneous resolution of CS may develop adrenal insufficiency, and they require long-term monitoring.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"

We want to hear from doctors like you!

Take a second to answer a survey question.