Pituitary Conditions We Treat
Pituitary adenomas are benign tumors found within the pituitary gland. The pituitary gland is located at the base of the brain towards the front of the head. The pituitary gland is often referred to as the “master hormone production center,” since it controls many of the hormones produced in the body, including hormones that regulate growth and the activity of other glands. A pituitary adenoma is an abnormal growth, or tumor, in this gland. When a tumor arises in this area, hormones are often affected.
If untreated, pituitary adenomas can lead to:
- Severe headaches
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
- Abnormal cholesterol
- Joint and bone issues
- Memory loss
- Reduced longevity
With prompt and proper treatment and, if necessary, appropriate hormone replacement, patients who have had a pituitary tumor can expect to live a normal, productive life.
Pituitary Adenoma Treatments
Our globally recognized team of experts treats pituitary tumors and conditions of all kinds with procedures that include:
- Transsphenoidal surgery: A treatment that goes through the nose and the base of the skull
- Microscopic surgery: A standard technique that uses a high-powered microscope to reach the tumor through the nose
- Endoscopic surgery: A technique that uses an endoscope (a lighted optical instrument) to reach the tumor
- Gamma Knife radiosurgery: An alternative method to treat tumors that aren't otherwise accessible
Understanding Pituitary Tumors
A pituitary tumor is not:
- A brain tumor: The pituitary gland is not inside the brain and pituitary tissue is different from brain tissue.
- Cancer: In over 99 percent of patients, it is not a cancer. It is benign and will not spread to other parts of the body.
Pituitary adenomas are common. In autopsy studies of patients who did not have known pituitary disease, as many as 26 percent had a small tumor (adenoma) in the gland.
Types of Pituitary Adenomas
Pituitary adenomas are generally categorized by their size and by the hormones involved. Since the pituitary gland is small in size (about the size of a pea), pituitary adenomas tend to be relatively small. They include:
- Cushing’s disease
- Non-functioning pituitary adenoma
- Pituitary cysts, including Rathke’s cleft cyst
- TSH-producing pituitary adenoma