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Effectiveness of metyrapone in treating Cushings Syndrome a retrospective multicentre study in 195 patients

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Published:9th Sep 2015
Author: Daniel E, Aylwin S, Mustafa O, Ball S, Munir A, Boelaert K et al.
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Ref.:J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2015 Nov;100(11):4146-54
Effectiveness of Metyrapone in Treating Cushing's Syndrome: A Retrospective Multicenter Study in 195 Patients

Cushing's syndrome (CS) is a severe condition with excess mortality and significant morbidity necessitating control of hypercortisolemia. There are few data documenting use of the steroidogenesis inhibitor metyrapone for this purpose.

Objective: The objective was to assess the effectiveness of metyrapone in controlling cortisol excess in a contemporary series of patients with CS.

Design: This was designed as a retrospective, multicenter study.

Setting: Thirteen University hospitals were studied.

Patients: We studied a total of 195 patients with proven CS: 115 Cushing's disease, 37 ectopic ACTH syndrome, 43 ACTH-independent disease (adrenocortical carcinoma 10, adrenal adenoma 30, and ACTH-independent adrenal hyperplasia 3).

Measurements: Measurements included biochemical parameters of activity of CS: mean serum cortisol "day-curve" (CDC) (target 150-300 nmol/L); 9 am serum cortisol; 24-hour urinary free cortisol (UFC).

Results: A total of 164/195 received metyrapone monotherapy. Mean age was 49.6 ± 15.7 years; mean duration of therapy 8 months (median 3 mo, range 3 d to 11.6 y). There were significant improvements on metyrapone, first evaluation to last review: CDC (91 patients, 722.9 nmol/L [26.2 μg/dL] vs 348.6 nmol/L [12.6 μg/dL]; P < .0001); 9 am cortisol (123 patients, 882.9 nmol/L [32.0 μg/dL] vs 491.1 nmol/L [17.8 μg/dL]; P < .0001); and UFC (37 patients, 1483 nmol/24 h [537 μg/24 h] vs 452.6 nmol/24 h [164 μg/24 h]; P = .003). Overall, control at last review: 55%, 43%, 46%, and 76% of patients who had CDCs, UFCs, 9 am cortisol less than 331 nmol/L (12.0 μg/dL), and 9 am cortisol less than upper limit of normal/600 nmol/L (21.7 μg/dL). Median final dose: Cushing's disease 1375 mg; ectopic ACTH syndrome 1500 mg; benign adrenal disease 750 mg; and adrenocortical carcinoma 1250 mg. Adverse events occurred in 25% of patients, mostly mild gastrointestinal upset and dizziness, usually within 2 weeks of initiation or dose increase, all reversible.

Conclusions: Metyrapone is effective therapy for short- and long-term control of hypercortisolemia in CS.


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