Acromegaly is associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. However, increased growth hormone (GH) and insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I exert deleterious effects on multiple organs and tissues and, in a direct or an indirect fashion, effect non-cardiac complications as well. The current knowledge about acromegalic arthropathy and sleep apnea will be briefly summarized here.
The articular manifestations of acromegaly were first recognized in Pierre Marie's original description of this disease in 1886. It is, perhaps, symbolic that Marie's name is connected not only with acromegaly but also with Marie-Strumpell disease (ankylosing spondylitis).
Arthropathy affects many, if not most, patients with acromegaly. In one form or another, musculoskeletal complaints are a leading cause of morbidity and functional disability in acromegaly. Several studies provided detailed epidemiologic description of acromegalic arthropathy. In the largest series of that kind, Detenbeck et al. (1973) found that 62% of the 229 patients examined had at