We investigated the natural course of adrenal incidentalomas in 115 patients by means of a long-term endocrine and morphological (CT) follow-up protocol (median 4 year, range 1-7 year). At entry, we observed 61 subclinical hormonal alterations in 43 patients (mainly concerning the ACTH-cortisol axis), but confirmatory tests always excluded specific endocrine diseases. In all cases radiologic signs of benignity were present. Mean values of the hormones examined at last follow-up did not differ from those recorded at entry. However in individual patients several variations were observed. In particular, 57 endocrine alterations found in 43 patients (37.2%) were no longer confirmed at follow-up, while 35 new alterations in 31 patients (26.9%) appeared de novo. Only four alterations in three patients (2.6%) persisted. Confirmatory tests were always negative for specific endocrine diseases. No variation in mean mass size was found between values at entry (25.4 ± 0.9 mm) and at follow-up (25.7 ± 0.9 mm), although in 32 patients (27.8%) mass size actually increased, while in 24 patients (20.8%) it decreased. In no case were the variations in mass dimension associated with the appearance of radiological criteria of malignancy. Kaplan-Meier curves indicated that the cumulative risk for mass enlargement (65%) and for developing endocrine abnormalities (57%) over time was progressive up to 80 months and independent of haemodynamic and humoral basal characteristics. In conclusion, mass enlargement and the presence or occurrence over time of subclinical endocrine alterations are frequent and not correlated, can appear at any time, are not associated with any basal predictor and, finally, are not necessarily indicative of malignant transformation or of progression toward overt disease.
|Autori:||BERNINI G; MORETTI A; ORLANDINI C; BARDINI M; TAURINO C; SALVETTI A|
|Titolo:||Long-term morphological and hormonal follow-up in a single Unit on 115 patients with adrenal incidentalomas|
|Anno del prodotto:||2005|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1038/sj.bjc.6602459|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|