There are many different parts to the human body that make it possible for the entire organism to operate properly. Some of those parts are relatively small but the effect that they can have on the human body is tremendous. An example of this is found in the glands of the body, including the pituitary gland. When it is operating properly, it helps the human body to operate properly as well. When something goes wrong, however, serious issues may result that could lead to a wide variety of symptoms. A pituitary tumor is one of those conditions.
The pituitary gland is a relatively small gland that is located below the brain but above the nasal passages. When you have a tumor in the area of the pituitary gland, it can end up pressing against the nerves and the brain, leading to a wide variety of symptoms. Some of the most common symptoms are changes in vision or headaches that are localized but there may also be changes in the way that hormones are produced by the pituitary gland as well. Those changes in hormones can lead to sexual dysfunction and changes in the menstrual cycle.
If you live in the Dallas Metroplex, including Allen and McKinney, you can contact Dr. Dickerman for assistance in dealing with a pituitary tumor. As a board-certified spine and brain surgeon, he can make the proper diagnosis and then offer you treatment options to help deal with this difficult situation. Pituitary tumors do not always require a surgical procedure and Dr. Dickerman may be able to recommend a number of nonsurgical options that may work well for your circumstances. Those nonsurgical options may include radiation in some cases although other types of medication, especially those that slow down hormone production, may be of assistance.
With the symptoms that we previously described, there may also be additional symptoms if the pituitary tumor is excessively large. When the tumor is at least 1 cm in diameter it can lead to other difficulties. As was discussed, headaches and vision loss, particularly in the peripheral vision may be a problem. As a result of hormone levels change from the pituitary gland, additional symptoms may be experienced. When a deficiency of hormones is the problem, you may have an issue with weakness, nausea and vomiting, an increased output of urine and unintended changes in your weight. Joint pain, heart problems, high blood sugar, excessive sweating and an increase in body hair may also be a problem for some people.
There are some people who may be at a higher risk for pituitary tumors. This includes individuals who have a family history of hereditary conditions that could lead to this type of issue. For example, when a family history of multiple tumors occurring in the endocrine system are seen, it could be a genetic problem that could lead to this type of disorder. The symptoms may also be permanent, as is the case with vision loss or a hormone deficiency that persists, even if the tumor is removed or kept under control.