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Pituitary Tumor

Pituitary Carcinoma
Pituitary tumors that are cancerous are called carcinomas. These are tumors that can spread far from the pituitary gland through the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) or outside of the central nervous system. Similar to adenomas, carcinomas can make pituitary hormones, commonly ACTH and prolactin.
Metastatic Cancer
Some cancers in other parts of the body may metastasize (spread) to the pituitary gland, but these pituitary tumors usually do not cause symptoms. Breast and lung cancer are the most common types of cancer that spread to the pituitary.
(Click Types of Pituitary Tumors for more information.)

What Causes Them?

Although research continues to unravel the mysteries of disordered cell growth, the cause or causes of pituitary tumors remain unknown. Most pituitary tumors are sporadic, meaning they are not genetically passed from parents to offspring.

Symptoms of Pituitary Tumors

Symptoms of a pituitary tumor can range from simple, common complaints, such as tiredness or restlessness, to more serious symptoms, such as headaches, vomiting, or dizziness.
Symptoms vary, depending on the size and location of the tumor. If the tumor grows large and presses on nearby parts of the brain, symptoms (such as headaches or dizziness) can occur. A pituitary tumor also can press on the optic nerve, causing problems with vision.
Pituitary tumor symptoms also vary based on the hormones the pituitary tumor is producing.
(Click Pituitary Tumor Symptoms for more information.)
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Pituitary Tumors

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