Transsphenoidal Surgery for Cushing Disease: Experience With 136 Patients

Neurosurgery 70:70–81, 2012 DOI: 10.1227/NEU.0b013e31822dda2c

This is a retrospective study of 136 patients with Cushing disease treated with transsphenoidal microsurgery.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate factors influencing immediate postoperative results and longterm outcomes.

METHODS: Data regarding clinical presentation, endocrine evaluation, imaging studies, surgical technique, immediate postoperative biochemical remission (IPBR), and longterm results were entered into a database and analyzed statistically. IPBR was based on biochemical evidence of adrenal cortical insufficiency and clinical evidence of such insufficiency.

RESULTS: IPBR for the entire series was 83.4%. In microadenomas, IPBR was 89.8% with a mean immediate postoperative plasma cortisol (IPPC) of 2.1 mg/dL (range, ,0.5-5.3). Positive magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was associated with 18 times greater odds of finding microadenoma at surgery (P < .001) and with 4.1 times greater odds of IPBR (P = .07). In patients with a negative MRI, a positive inferior petrosal sinus sampling (IPSS) test was associated with 93% of IPBR (P = .004). IPBR in macroadenomas was 30.7%. Of patients followed for 12 months or longer, 34.8% required glucocorticoid replacement for the duration of follow-up. The mean follow-up in microadenomas was 68.4 months with a 9.67% incidence of recurrences. The estimated actuarial incidence of recurrences increased with the passage of time and IPPC of greater than 2 mg/dL was associated with higher incidence of recurrences, although without statistical significance (P = .08).

CONCLUSION: In microadenomas, a positive MRI and positive IPSS test were associated with a higher incidence of IPBR. Recurrences increased with the passage of time, and an IPPC of greater than 2 mg/dL may be associated with higher incidence of recurrences.