Endocrine changes have been reported in treated epileptic subjects, who often exhibit sexual dysfunctions, but the endocrine effects of single antiepileptic drugs have not been completely elucidated. In this study we have investigated the influence of phenobarbital (PB) on adenopituitary function and on peripheral sexual steroid pattern in 8 epileptic males. Chronic PB treatment does not modify luteinizing hormone (LH) pulsatile secretion. In the same subjects, LH and follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) response to Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone was blunted with respect to healthy controls both in terms of absolute values and of secretion areas. No difference was; found in prolactin (PRL) response to Thyrotropin Releasing Hormone. In the epileptic group a significant increase in the levels of sex hormone binding globulin and a consequent decrease of the percent free testosterone have been observed. PB treatment also significantly lowers 17-β-estradiol mean levels. These data suggest that PB independently affects both gonadotropin secretion and peripheral steroid pattern.
- follicle stimulating hormone
- luteinizing hormone
- luteinizing hormone pulsatile secretion
- sex hormone binding globulin
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism