n SA Journal of Radiology - The ectopic posterior pituitary - a short case series : case series

Volume 11, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1027-202X
  • E-ISSN: 2078-6778



The ectopic posterior pituitary (EPP) refers to the anomalous position of the distinctly bright posterior pituitary gland. Defective neural migration during embryogenesis is believed to be the cause of the EPP. This hypothesis is supported by the co-existence of other midline structural malformations where anterior pituitary hypoplasia and EPP are the end products.

The EPP often occurs in patients with growth hormone deficiency (GHD), and is a marker of GHD. The EPP should alert the radiologist to perform a precise MRI study as it is an important marker of anterior pituitary structure and function. The hyperintense posterior pituitary is due to its phospholipid content.

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