Pituitary Conditions & Treatments

There are many conditions that involve the pituitary. They are often referring to as pituitary disorders. Some conditions are referred to as diseases or syndromes. Pituitary tumors are responsible for a majority of hormone abnormalities involving the pituitary gland.

There are several terms for pituitary tumors.

  • Adenoma is a medical term for pituitary tumor. You will often see “pituitary adenoma” used in MRI’s and radiology reports.
  • Micro-adenoma is a pituitary tumor that is less than 10mm in size.
  • Macro-adenoma is a pituitary tumor that is 10mm or larger.

There are pituitary tumors that secrete hormones and some that do not.

  • Secreting tumors result in: A Prolactinemia, Acromegaly, and Cushing’s.
  • Non-secreting tumors are: Null cell or non-functioning describe adenomas that do not secrete a hormones. Craniopharyngiomas and Rathky’s Cleft Cyst do not secrete hormones.

Other Conditions Involving The Pituitary Gland

  • Pituitary Cysts
    Pituitary adenomas are most common growths of the pituitary gland, but cysts can form in the pituitary region also.
  • Empty Sella
    The empty sella is not a disease but rather an anatomical description of the pocket
    (the sella) in which the pituitary gland lies
  • Infections and Inflammatory Conditions
    Infections are a rare cause of pituitary disease.
  • Non-pituitary Tumors in the Sella
    Most pituitary gland tumors will be adenomas but in rare cases other tumors may be found in or involving the gland.

Treatment of Pituitary Adenomas

The treatment plan will be specific for each tumor type, as well as for each patient, and may include surgery, radiation, and/or drug therapy.