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Minerva Endocrinologica 2004 September;29(3):77-88

language: English, Italian

Cardiovascular complications in acromegaly

Vitale G., Pivonello R., Lombardi G., Colao A.


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Cardiovascular morbidity and mortality are increased in acromegaly. In fact, GH and IGF-I excess induces a specific cardiomyopathy. The early stage of acromegaly is characterized by the hyperkinetic syndrome (high heart rate and increased systolic output). Frequently, concentric biventricular hypertrophy and diastolic dysfunction occur in acromegaly, leading to an impaired systolic function ending in heart failure if the disease is untreated or unsuccessfully untreated. Besides, abnormalities of cardiac rhythm and of valves have been also described in acromegaly. The coexistence of other complications, such as arterial hypertension and diabetes, aggravates the acromegalic cardiomyopathy. The suppression of GH/IGF-I following an efficacious therapy could decrease left ventricular mass and improve cardiac function. In conclusion, a careful evaluation of cardiac function, morphology and activity seems to be mandatory in acromegaly.

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