A pituitary adenoma is a benign tumor often found behind the eyes and beneath the brain in the pituitary gland.
Pituitary adenoma tumors can affect how the pituitary gland secretes hormones that help regulate metabolism, tissue development, mood and sleep. Some tumors increase hormone secretion while others are ‘non-functional’ or non-secreting.
Symptoms can include:
- Infertility or low testosterone levels
- Diminished libido
- High blood sugars
- Gigantism from excessive secretion of growth hormone
When pituitary adenomas increase in size, they can compress the vision nerves leading to decreased peripheral vision. Other symptoms are often related to hormones secreted such as weight gain, loss of menstrual cycles in females, enlarged feet and hands.
Treatment options at IU Health include hormone testing and imaging studies to review the tumor size and distance from the pituitary gland.
Endoscopic pituitary surgery is a common option for treatment of pituitary adenoma tumors, while radiation therapy is an option for patients who may not be a candidate for surgery.