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Open access

Mark R Postma, Pia Burman, and André P van Beek


Adult-onset growth hormone deficiency (AGHD) is usually the last deficiency to be substituted in hypopituitarism. In children with documented GH deficiency, treatment without delay is crucial for achieving optimal effects on growth and development. In adults, it is not known whether a delay in treatment initiation influences biochemical response and the favourable physiological effects resulting from GH replacement therapy (GHRT).


A total of 1085 GH-deficient adults from KIMS (Pfizer International Metabolic Database) were included, adequately replaced with all pituitary hormones except for GH at baseline. Patients were stratified by sex and age (20–50 years and ≥50 years) and subsequently divided into two groups below and above the median duration of unsubstituted AGHD for that subgroup. The median time of unsubstituted GHD for the total cohort was 2.53 years (P5 = 0.35, P95 = 24.42).


Beneficial effects of 4 years of GHRT were observed on lipids and quality of life in all subgroups. A decrease in waist circumference was observed only in older (>50 years) patients. There was no difference in IGF-I SDS and in GH dose required to normalize IGF-I in patients with a duration of unsubstituted AGHD above or below the median. No relevant differences were found between the groups for anthropometric measures, cardiovascular risk factors and quality of life scores.


In contrast to GHD in children and adolescents, no difference could be established in treatment response between early or late initiation of GHRT in AGHD in terms of required GH dose, IGF-I, metabolic health and quality of life.

Open access

Sandra N Slagter, Robert P van Waateringe, André P van Beek, Melanie M van der Klauw, Bruce H R Wolffenbuttel, and Jana V van Vliet-Ostaptchouk


To evaluate the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) and its individual components within sex-, body mass index (BMI)- and age combined clusters. In addition, we used the age-adjusted blood pressure thresholds to demonstrate the effect on the prevalence of MetS and elevated blood pressure.

Subjects and methods

Cross-sectional data from 74,531 Western European participants, aged 18–79 years, were used from the Dutch Lifelines Cohort Study. MetS was defined according to the revised NCEP-ATPIII. Age-adjusted blood pressure thresholds were defined as recommended by the eight reports of the Joint National Committee (≥140/90 mmHg for those aged <60 years, and ≥150/90 mmHg for those aged ≥60 years).


19.2% men and 12.1% women had MetS. MetS prevalence increased with BMI and age. Independent of BMI, abdominal obesity dominated MetS prevalence especially in women, while elevated blood pressure was already highly prevalent among young men. Applying age-adjusted blood pressure thresholds resulted in a 0.2–11.9% prevalence drop in MetS and 6.0–36.3% prevalence drop in elevated blood pressure, within the combined sex, BMI and age clusters.


We observed a gender disparity with age and BMI for the prevalence of MetS and, especially, abdominal obesity and elevated blood pressure. The strict threshold level for elevated blood pressure in the revised NCEP-ATPIII, results in an overestimation of MetS prevalence.

Open access

Marloes Emous, Merel van den Broek, Ragnhild B Wijma, Loek J M de Heide, Gertjan van Dijk, Anke Laskewitz, Erik Totté, Bruce H R Wolffenbuttel, and André P van Beek


Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) is an effective way to induce sustainable weight loss and can be complicated by postprandial hyperinsulinaemic hypoglycaemia (PHH). To study the prevalence and the mechanisms behind the occurrence of hypoglycaemia after a mixed meal tolerance test (MMTT) in patients with primary RYGB.


This is a cross-sectional study of patients 4 years after primary RYGB.


From a total population of 550 patients, a random sample of 44 patients completed the total test procedures. A standardized mixed meal was used as stimulus. Venous blood samples were collected at baseline, every 10 min during the first half hour and every 30 min until 210 min after the start. Symptoms were assessed by questionnaires. Hypoglycaemia is defined as a blood glucose level below 3.3 mmol/L.


The prevalence of postprandial hypoglycaemia was 48% and was asymptomatic in all patients. Development of hypoglycaemia was more frequent in patients with lower weight at surgery (P = 0.045), with higher weight loss after surgery (P = 0.011), and with higher insulin sensitivity calculated by the homeostasis model assessment indexes (HOMA2-IR, P = 0.014) and enhanced beta cell function (insulinogenic index at 20 min, P = 0.001).


In a randomly selected population 4 years after primary RYGB surgery, 48% of patients developed a hypoglycaemic event during an MMTT without symptoms, suggesting the presence of hypoglycaemia unawareness in these patients. The findings in this study suggest that the pathophysiology of PHH is multifactorial.