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Endocrine Practice 2016 January
OBJECTIVE: Adipsic diabetes insipidus (ADI) is a rare disorder consisting of central diabetes insipidus (CDI) and a deficient or absent thirst response to hyperosmolality. Patients with ADI experience marked morbidity and mortality. Diagnosis and management of these patients is quite challenging, even in expert hands. In this review, we aim to provide an updated overview of this difficult clinical scenario.

METHODS: We conducted a PubMed search for articles related to ADI. The search terms "adipsia," "adipsic," "thirst," and "diabetes insipidus" were used to identify relevant literature.

RESULTS: ADI has been described in only approximately 100 patients. This rarity has limited the quality and quantity of literature to case reports, case series, and expert opinion. Diagnosis focuses on confirmation of CDI followed by documenting subnormal or completely absent thirst in response to a hypertonic stimulus. Among the described patients with ADI, the majority experience morbidity (e.g., severe hypernatremia, sleep apnea, venous thromboembolism [VTE], and obesity) and an increased mortality risk. Management focuses on frequent reassessment of daily prescribed water intake with fixed antidiuretic therapy (desmopressin) and comorbidity screening.

CONCLUSION: The complexity of patients with ADI provides a difficult challenge for clinicians. Prompt recognition of thirst disorders in patients with CDI should lead to appropriately regimented management strategies and can result in safe outpatient care for these unique patients.

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