Pituitary volume in teenagers with first-presentation borderline personality disorder

Psychiatry Res. 2007 Dec 15;156(3):257-61. doi: 10.1016/j.pscychresns.2007.05.001. Epub 2007 Oct 22.


This study used magnetic resonance imaging to examine pituitary gland volume (PGV) in teenage patients with a first presentation of borderline personality disorder (BPD). No difference in PGV was observed between healthy controls (n=20) and the total BPD cohort (n=20). However, within the BPD cohort, those exposed to childhood trauma (n=9) tended to have smaller pituitaries (-18%) than those with no history of childhood trauma (n=10). These preliminary findings suggest that exposure to childhood trauma, rather than BPD, per se, might be associated with reduced PGV, possibly reflecting hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis dysfunction.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Borderline Personality Disorder / epidemiology
  • Borderline Personality Disorder / physiopathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypothalamo-Hypophyseal System / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Pituitary Gland / anatomy & histology*
  • Pituitary-Adrenal System / physiopathology
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / epidemiology
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / psychology