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April 1962

Ophthalmological Observations in Hypophyseal Stalk Section: Report of 8 Cases of Advancing Diabetic Retinopathy

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Medicine, and Neurosurgery of the Harvard Medical School, and the Retina Foundation, Department of Ophthalmology, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, and the Departments of Medicine (Diabetes Unit), and Neurosurgery of the Massachusetts General Hospital.; Clinical Fellow, Retina Foundation, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (Dr. Contreras); Associate in Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Assistant Physician and Program Director Diabetes Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital, Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute (Dr. Field); Fellow in Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Clinical and Research Fellow in Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Trainee, National Institute of Arthritis and Metabolic Disease, National Institutes of Health (Dr. Hall); Associate Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School, Assisting Neurosurgeon, Massachusetts General Hospital (Dr. Sweet).

Arch Ophthalmol. 1962;67(4):428-438. doi:10.1001/archopht.1962.00960020430009

Introduction  There are an impressive number of instances in medicine in which a clear understanding of the fundamental pathogenesis of a disease has resulted from careful clinical observations of the results of an effective, though empiric, form of therapy. Hopefully, this will be the case in regard to changes which occur in hemorrhagic diabetic retinopathy following suppression of pituitary function.Most reports agree that the correct performance of an operation on the pituitary gland can modify the diabetic retinopathy to the extent that further visual impairment is prevented. In some cases, actual regression of the process has been described. Nevertheless, doubts as to whether hypophysectomy should be recommended as a measure of treatment have been raised in view of its unavoidable hazards.1-6 The accumulation of carefully obtained data should resolve the problem and lessen the discrepancy in views concerning the merits of the procedure, but it is fundamental to

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