Pituitary tumors are abnormal growths that develop in your pituitary gland. Some pituitary tumors result in excess levels of hormones that regulate important functions of your body; while other pituitary tumors can cause the gland to produce lower levels of hormones. It's important to know that most pituitary tumors are benign (noncancerous) growths that remain in your pituitary gland or surrounding the tissue and don't spread to other parts of your body.
Symptoms of Pituitary Tumors
However not all pituitary tumors cause symptoms. Pituitary tumors that make hormones (functioning) can cause a variety of signs and symptoms depending on the hormone they produce. The signs and symptoms of pituitary tumors that don't make hormones (nonfunctioning) are related to their growth and the pressure they put on other structures, causing symptoms of headaches or vision loss, particularly loss of peripheral vision.
Functioning Pituitary Tumors
Functioning pituitary tumors cause an overproduction of hormones. Different types of functioning tumors in your pituitary gland cause specific signs and symptoms and sometimes a combination of them including; nausea and vomiting, weakness, feeling cold, less frequent or no menstrual periods, sexual dysfunction, increased amount of urine, unintended weight loss or gain.
How are Pituitary Tumors Treated?
There are various options for treating pituitary tumors, including:
- removing the tumor
- controlling its growth medically
- managing your hormone levels with medications
After the diagnosis or diagnoses have been made, the treatment plan is created in conjunction with an Endocrinologist. Suggested therapies may include surgical interventions, medical management or both. If surgery to remove the tumor is recommended, your sinonasal symptoms can be addressed at the same time.
The return of olfaction and of sinonasal function are important end points after pituitary surgery. Opinions differ on the impact of surgery because techniques vary greatly. A modiﬁed preservation of the so-called olfactory strip is utilized by our doctors as they have perfected this technique though experience and research.
Sinus and Nasal Specialists of Louisiana’s doctors, Henry P. Barham MD and Christian A. Hall MD, are both Board Certified ENT doctors that have completed one year accredited fellowships in Rhinology, the medical field dedicated to complex medical problems of the nose, sinuses, and skull base (Pituitary). Drs. Barham and Hall have the knowledge and skill to fully diagnose and treat problems of the pituitary gland, including tumors.
If you have been diagnosed with a pituitary tumor, Sinus and Nasal Specialists of Louisiana can help you. We are located at 8585 Picardy Avenue Suite 512 Medical Tower 2, Baton Rouge, LA 70809. We can be reached at 225-819-1181. Please contact us for a consultation. There is no referral necessary. We would love to help you.