What is Pituitary Adenoma?
A Pituitary adenoma is a tumor of the endocrine system, a system that’s responsible for secreting various hormones into the bloodstream. This tumor grows in the pituitary gland, which while it isn’t technically part of the brain, the gland affects the way the body releases hormones to make them work. It’s considered to be the “master gland” because of how it regulates and balances hormone production that affects people’s lives, such as growth, reproduction, and development.
What are the Symptoms of a Pituitary Adenoma?
Any adenomas found in the pituitary gland can obstruct the cells from working properly, resulting in either overproduction or underproduction of hormones. Some of the symptoms of a potential pituitary adenoma include:
- Vision Problems
- Nausea and Vomiting
- Changes in behavior
- Nasal Drainage
- Sexual Dysfunction
- Extreme Fatigue
- Unexplained weight gain/loss
- Achy Joints
- Early Menopause
- Changes in Period Habits
Are Pituitary Adenomas Cancerous?
Many times, pituitary adenomas are benign and quite common. In many cases, the growth is harmless, as about 1 in 5 people estimate to have had one at some point in their life. With these harmless growths, they rarely have a chance of becoming cancerous, but can cause some serious symptoms if untreated.
How Can A Doctor Diagnose a Pituitary Adenoma?
Depending on the size of the tumor, various symptoms can occur and not occur. The tumor can put pressure on the surrounding pituitary gland, especially the optic nerves surrounding the glad, which can result in vision loss. Eye doctors will be able to identify if there’s a pressure on the optic nerve through an eye test. A brain MRI or CT scan can also be conducted, revealing the pituitary obstruction. Hormonal testing can also test to see if there are issues with the pituitary gland as well to check on the production of hormones in the body.
How Are Pituitary Adenomas Treated?
Most doctors will suggest that to remove the adenoma, it will require an endoscopic surgery, where the surgeon will go into the nose to where the structure is, cut some of the nasal bone to expose the gland, and then remove the tumor from its location. Many times this surgery has been proven to be at least 90% successful. Other surgical procedures involve opening the skull from above the pituitary region to remove the tumor. After the initial surgery, some patients will develop degrees of gland failure, resulting in a hormonal imbalance. Through hormone replacement therapy, the hormones will help regenerate the gland’s ability to produce hormones again through long-term treatment.
If you’ve been experiencing any of the symptoms above, then contact your physician about getting an MRI or CT scan. Doctors such as Dr. Diana Wilson at the Neurosurgeon and Spine Fort Worth in Fort Worth, TX have the medical degrees and expertise to handle any serious issue with pituitary glands and brain tissues. If you want a team of highly-trained doctors that know how to care for you, then call their number and schedule an appointment with them today.