Microsurgical therapy of pituitary adenomas

P Mortini, LR Barzaghi, L Albano, P Panni, M Losa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: We report the efficacy and safety of transsphenoidal microsurgery in a large and homogeneous cohort of patients with pituitary adenomas (PAs) treated at a single Institute by a single neurosurgeon. Methods: A total of 2145 consecutive patients undergoing first surgery for a PA were included: 795 (37.1%) had a nonfunctioning pituitary adenoma (NFPA), 595 (27.7%) acromegaly, 496 (23.1%) Cushing’s disease, 208 (9.7%) a PRL-secreting adenoma, and 51 patients (2.4%) a TSH-secreting adenoma. Remission was achieved when strict hormonal and radiological criteria were met. Results: Early surgical remission was achieved in 66% of acromegalic patients, 79.6% of patients with Cushing’s disease, 64.4% of prolactinomas, 74.5% of patients with a TSH-secreting adenoma, and 66.9% of NFPAs. The mean (±SE) follow-up was 60.1 ± 1.3 months. The recurrence-free survival at 10 years was 78.2% in acromegalic patients, 68.1% in prolactinomas, 74.3% in Cushing’s disease, 70.3% in TSH-secreting adenomas, and 75.3% in NFPAs. Preoperative hypoadrenalism recovered in 35.3%, hypogonadism in 43.3% and hypothyroidism in 37.4% of patients with impaired function before surgery. The mortality rate was 0.2% and major morbidity 2.1%. New onset hypoadrenalism occurred after surgery in 2.5% of patients at risk, hypogonadism in 4.1%, and hypothyroidism in 1.8%. Permanent diabetes insipidus (DI) occurred in 0.9% of patients. Conclusions: In experienced hands, transsphenoidal microsurgery for PAs achieves remission in most patients with a low complication rate. Pituitary function is preserved in most cases and can recover in more than one-third of patients with preoperative hypopituitarism. © 2017 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-81
Number of pages10
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018


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