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Pituitary Gland Disorders > Pituitary Gland Tumors Effects & Latest Treatment

Find here the detailed information of the effects of the Pituitary Tumors and the treatment of Pituitary tumors that can be non cancerous or cancerous growths in the Pituitary Gland, which may cause hormonal disturbances. The Pituitary Gland, located at the base of the brain, secretes hormones that either have a direct effect on the body or affect other hormone-secreting glands. For this reason, an abnormality in the gland may affect several body systems. Tumors of the Pituitary Gland are rare, accounting for about 1 in 10 of all brain tumors. Most pituitary tumors produce excessive levels of hormones that cause symptoms directly or cause other glands to produce high levels of hormones. Usually, tumors are in the front of the gland and are noncancerous. The cause of the pituitary tumors is not known, although rarely they may be associated with inherited disorder multiple endocrine neoplasia.

What are the effects of the Pituitary Tumors?

Nearly half of all hormone-secreting Pituitary tumors make excess prolactin. Increased levels of prolactin may lead to infertility in women and impotence in men (Prolactinoma). Some pituitary tumors secrete growth hormone, causing enlargement of certain parts of the body (Acromegaly). Others secrete hormones that over stimulate the adrenal glands, causing changes in body chemistry and physical appearance (Cushing Syndrome).


As they expand, pituitary tumors may press against the optic nerves, which lie above the gland. Such compression may cause headaches and loss of part of the fieldof vision. Growing pituitary tumors may damage surrounding ells, thereby reducing hormone secretion, or may press on the posterior part of the gland, reducing secretion of antidiuretic hormone (ADH), which controls water balance (Diabetes Insipidus).


Pituitary Tumors Treatment


If Pituitary Tumor is suspected the person has to undergo several blood tests to look for abnormal levels of pituitary hormones. MRI and CT scanning to look for a tumor and a visual field test to check for blind areas. In some instances, a Pituitary Tumor is found during tests for another disorder. If this is the case, the tumor may be monitored without treatment unless symptoms develop.


Some Pituitary Tumors are treated with drugs that shrink them (Pituitary drugs). Others must be removed surgically. If it is not possible to remove the whole tumor, radiation therapy may be given to prevent further growth of abnormal tissue. These treatments may lead to hypopituitarism,  which may require hormone replacement for life.         

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