Pituitary tumours

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Contents

Introduction

Suspected when either hypopituitarism or hypersecretion of a pitiutary hormone is clinically manifest. The classic symptom is a frontal headache and sign is bitemporal hemianopia or third nerve palsy.

Aetiology

The commonest pituitary tumour is an adenoma. This is followed by metastatic spread of breast cancer, lung cancer, colon cancer and prostate cancer. Craniopharyngiomas which arise in adjacent tissue are in the differential diagnosis. Cystic structures will also act like a tumour so Rathke cleft cyst and arachnoid cysts have similar presentations.

Clinical

Although now found usually when hypopituitarism or one of the classic hypersecretion syndromes is suspected, or incidentally on cranial imaging, the first presentation can be the emergency of pituitary apoplexy.

Investigations

Blood tests

Radiology

  • Imaging - usually MRI and/or CT

Treatment

Medical

Surgical

External Links

This article is a work in progress. Please feel free to contribute to it.

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