#1 Ranked Children’s Hospital by U.S. News & World Report
MyPatients provides referring primary care providers with secure access to their patients’ information.
Boston Children's has launched the world's 1st program dedicated to offering hand transplants to children who qualify.
Innovation insider is a semi-monthly e-newsletter analyzes innovations at Boston Children’s, other academic medical centers and from industry.
Read the latest blog by a Boston Children's doctor, clinician or staff member.
There are many ways you can help children and their families get the care they need.
We understand that you may have a lot of questions when your child is diagnosed with hypopituitarism. Is it dangerous? Will it affect my child long term? What do we do next? We’ve tried to provide some answers to those questions on this site, and our experts can explain your child’s condition fully.
Growth hormone is a protein produced by the pituitary gland, which is located near the base of the brain and attached to the hypothalamus (a part of the brain that helps to regulate the pituitary gland). If the pituitary gland or the hypothalamus is malformed or damaged, it may mean that the pituitary gland can’t produce some or all of its hormones.
Hypopituitarism in children may be caused by:
Hypopituitarism can also be idiopathic, meaning that no exact cause can be determined.
The symptoms of hypopituitarism will vary depending on two things: which hormones are lacking, and your child’s age. Symptoms that newborn babies may have include:
Older infants and children may have these symptoms:
Because the symptoms of hypopituitarism may resemble other conditions or medical problems, you should always consult your child's physician for a diagnosis.
Q: What is hypopituitarism?
A: Hypopituitarism occurs when the anterior (front) lobe of the pituitary gland loses its ability to make hormones, resulting in multiple pituitary hormone deficiencies. Physical symptoms depend on which hormones are no longer being produced by the gland.
Q: What causes hypopituitarism?
A: Hypopituitarism may be caused by many different conditions, including:
Q: Is hypopituitarism treatable?
A: Treating hypopituitarism depends both on its cause and on which hormones are missing. The goal of treatment is to restore normal levels of hormones. Treating the underlying condition that’s causing your child’s hypopituitarism often leads to a full recovery.
Since your child’s body is unable to make some or all of these missing hormones, life-long hormone replacement therapy is necessary. Replacement therapy needs to be monitored and adjusted, but the extent of your child’s pituitary deficiency will determine how often he will need to see his doctor.
Q: How safe is treatment?
A: While there are many potential side effects, researchers generally agree that hormone replacement therapy is safe and effective.
You and your family are key players in your child’s medical care. It’s important that you share your observations and ideas with your child’s health care provider and that you understand your provider’s recommendations.
If your child is experiencing symptoms of hypopituitarism and you’ve set up an appointment, you probably already have some ideas and questions on your mind. But at the appointment, it can be easy to forget the questions you wanted to ask. It’s often helpful to jot them down ahead of time so that you can leave the appointment feeling like you have the information you need.
If your child is old enough, you may want to suggest that she write down what she wants to ask her health care provider, too.
Some of the questions you may want to ask include:
We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”