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Pituitary Tumor Treatment by Type

Treatment for ACTH-Producing Pituitary Tumors

ACTH-producing pituitary tumors may be treated with:
 
  • Surgery to remove the tumor (usually transsphenoidal surgery), with or without radiation therapy
  • Radiation therapy alone
  • Drug therapy to stop the tumor from making ACTH
  • A clinical trial of stereotactic radiation surgery.
     

Treatment for Growth Hormone-Producing Pituitary Tumors

Treatment for a growth hormone-producing pituitary tumor can include:
 
  • Surgery to remove the tumor (usually transsphenoidal surgery)
  • Drug therapy to stop the tumor from making growth hormone
  • Surgery followed by radiation therapy.
     

Treatment for Nonfunctioning Pituitary Tumors

Treatment for a nonfunctioning pituitary tumor can include:
 
  • Surgery to remove the tumor (transsphenoidal surgery or craniotomy), followed by watchful waiting (closely monitoring a patient's condition without administering any treatment until symptoms appear or change). If the tumor recurs, doctors may use radiation therapy to treat it.
     
  • Radiation therapy alone.
     
  • Surgery followed by radiation therapy.
     

Treatment for Thyroid Hormone-Producing Tumors

Thyroid hormone-producing tumors may be treated with:
 
  • Surgery to remove the tumor (usually transsphenoidal surgery), with or without radiation therapy
  • Drug therapy to prevent the tumor from making hormones.
     

Treatment for Pituitary Carcinomas

Treatment for a pituitary carcinoma is usually palliative -- it is designed to relieve symptoms and improve the patient's quality of life. It is usually not possible to cure a pituitary carcinoma. Treatment for a pituitary carcinoma can include:
 
  • Surgery to remove the cancer (transsphenoidal surgery or craniotomy), with or without radiation therapy
  • Drug therapy to stop the tumor from making hormones
  • Chemotherapy.
     
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Pituitary Tumors

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