Why choose us for pituitary tumors?
Pituitary tumors are often not cancerous but can still make you feel sick. Mays Cancer Center, home to UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center, helps you receive more of the services you need close to home.
Our endocrinologists and neurosurgeons work together to deliver comprehensive care. From testing to treatment and follow-up exams, we are here for you with personalized services and support.
Your pituitary gland is part of the endocrine system. Read more about our endocrine tumor program.
What you need to know about pituitary tumors
- Your pituitary gland sits behind your nose, near the base of your brain. This gland sends signals to other parts of the endocrine system to regulate growth and organ functioning.
- Pituitary tumors may or may not produce high levels of hormones. In some cases, tumors grow large enough to affect nearby organs, including your eyes or brain.
- Some people face a higher risk of pituitary tumors, especially those with a history of hereditary conditions such as multiple endocrine neoplasia.
How to talk to your doctor about pituitary tumors
It’s natural to have a lot of questions after receiving a pituitary tumor diagnosis. We take the time to address your concerns and explain the next steps in your care.
You might want to ask your doctor about:
- Genetic testing and counseling is available
- Diagnosis, including whether the tumor is cancerous
- Care options, which may include watchful waiting or surgery
- Potential treatment side effects and what we can do to help you get relief
- Support to help you cope with how a pituitary tumor may affect your daily life
Making decisions about tests and treatments is often a team effort. Our doctors explain options in clear, understandable ways. You can also bring family members or trusted friends with you for support.
The main types of pituitary tumors include:
- ACTH-producing tumors lead to high levels of adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH), which helps regulate metabolism and the immune system.
- Growth hormone-producing tumors cause abnormally fast growth in children. In adults, they cause problems in the bones of the face, hands and feet.
- Nonfunctional adenomas, which are the most common type, do not produce hormones.
- Prolactin-producing tumors cause high levels of a hormone that causes irregular periods in women and low sperm count in men.
- Thyroid stimulating hormone-secreting tumors cause your body to make too much thyroid hormone.