Background: Hypophysectomy (HX) results in a cessation of bone growth and a decrease in bone metabolism. The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of HX on the static and dynamic histomorphometry of cancellous bone in the secondary spongiosa of the proximal tibial metaphysis in rats.
Methods: Female rats, at 2 or 3 months of age, were HX and sacrificed at 0, 5 days, 2 and 5 weeks after the surgery. Age-matched intact rats served as controls. Cancellous bone histomorphometry was performed on doublefluorescent labeled, 30-um-thick sections of the proximal tibia. Tartrateresistant acid phosphatase histomorphometry was performed at 5 days on HX and control rats to evaluate the resorption in the metaphyseal bone.
Results: Although the intact rats gained in body weight, tibial length, tibial weight, and density after 5 weeks, these changes did not occur following HX. As compared to the basal group, HX resulted in a decrease in the density and dry weight of the metaphysis. The histomorphometric data showed that the cancellous bone volume and trabecular number of the secondary spongiosa were decreased and the separation was increased in the HX rats. The dynamic results showed that HX significantly decreased longitudinal growth rate and tissue-based bone formation and resorption. However, the bone surface-based eroded surface, labeled surface, the mineral apposition rate, and the bone formation rate did not differ between the intact and the HX rats at either the 2 or 5 weeks study. Five days after HX, the bone surface and tissue-based osteoclast surfaces were significantly lower in the HX than in the intact rats.
Conclusions: Pituitary hormone deficiency results in cancellous bone loss. The bone loss is due primarily to the suppression of longitudinal growth-dependent bone gain and the inhibition of tissue-based bone turnover with a lower bone formation relative to bone resorption. The surfacebased bone turnover is not affected. © 1995 Wiley-Liss, Inc.