The syndrome of septo-optic dysplasia in Saudi children

Bassam S. Bin-Abbas, Abdullah A. Al-Ashwal, Ibrahim A. Al-Alwan, Mohammad H. Al-Qahtani, Angham N. Al-Mutair, Nadia A. Sakati

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Objective: To describe the clinical, ophthalmological, endocrinological and radiological features of 10 Saudi children with the syndrome of septo-optic dysplasia and hypothalamic hypopituitarism Methods: All patients underwent complete ophthalmological and endocrinological evaluation at the Pediatric Endocrine Clinics, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center and King Fahad National Guard Hospital, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, from October 1999 through to May 2004. The hormonal evaluation included growth hormone, adrenocorticotrophic hormone, thyroid stimulating hormone, gonadotropin and anti diuretic hormone testing, and the neuroradiological assessment included brain magnetic resonance imaging or computed tomogram scanning, or both. Results: The current age of patients ranged from 18-months to 5-years. The mean age of initial presentation for endocrine evaluation was 14-months. Hormonal studies indicated that all children had multiple pituitary hormone deficiencies (2 or more of the pituitary hormones were deficient). Ten children had growth hormone deficiency, 8 had thyroid stimulating hormone deficiency, 8 had adrenocorticotrophic hormone deficiency, 2 children were suspected to have gonadotropin deficiency and central diabetes insipidus was present in one patient. Pendular nystagmus and impaired vision were common initial signs. All children had bilateral optic nerve hypoplasia. Neuroradiologic findings were variable. Eight children had absent septum pellucidum, 3 had pituitary gland hypoplasia, 2 had pituitary stalk dysplasia (pituitary stalk was either attenuated or not visualized), 2 had absent corpus callosum and one had absent posterior pituitary high intensity signal. All patients were replaced with appropriate hormonal replacement therapy. Two male children had micropenis which responded to testosterone therapy. Conclusion: The syndrome of septo-optic dysplasia is commonly associated with hypothalamic hypopituitarism including anterior and posterior pituitary hormonal deficiencies. Early diagnosis of this syndrome is critical as the hormonal deficiencies can be life threatening.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1675-1678
Number of pages4
JournalSaudi Medical Journal
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2004
Externally publishedYes


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