My husband had a TBI in 1995. He suffers everyday from chronic headaches, body aches and pains, confusion, isolation, and depression. And he now has Type-II Diabetes. He is deteriorating and the doctors are looking at pain management, but what about the testing of his hormones? From the research I have done, his symptoms look very much like hypopituitarism. I cannot get the doctors to listen. I am currently trying to find a neuroendocrinologist. Do you have any suggestions? Surely, he does not have to suffer like this every day.
If your husband had hypopituitarism (a condition in which the pituitary gland does not produce normal amounts of some or all of its hormones), it would have been evident soon after his brain injury. The likelihood that he has developed hypopituitarism years after the injury as a result of the brain injury is slim to none. However, if you have concerns about this, he could be evaluated for his levels of sex hormone, growth hormone and thyroid hormone as well as any adrenal function impairments. A good endocrinologist should be able to do these tests easily.
If your husband truly has symptoms of hypopituitarism that have developed late after injury, I would think about unrelated tumors in the pituitary area which can also be associated with headaches. If he has not had a cerebral MRI since the onset of these symptoms, this might be somethingto consider.. It is important to separate the problems that are brain injury related from those that are not.
I also think it is critical to make sure that your husband’s care is being overseen by a doctor who specializes TBI and its long-term effects.
Nathan Zasler, MD is CEO and medical director for Concussion Care Centre of Virginia, Ltd. as well as CEO and medical director for Tree of Life Services, Inc. He is board certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation and fellowship trained in brain injury.