How do I know I have a pituitary disorder?
The pituitary is the master regulator of multiple hormonal systems. The damage to this gland can cause multiple hormonal disruptions simultaneously. There is also the possibility of the gland hypersecreting hormones leading to hormone excess as discussed below.
The hormonal deficiencies that can result from pituitary damage include:
- Adrenal Insufficiency manifesting as fatigue and postural dizziness.
- Hypothyroidism manifesting as lack of energy and low mood and energy.
- Hypogonadism manifesting as lack of periods or loss of sexual desire and function.
- Growth hormone deficiency manifesting as lack of energy and potentially short stature if it occurs early in puberty.
The hormonal overproduction from the pituitary include the following:
- Cushings disease due to excess cortisol
- Acromegaly due to excess Growth Hormone
- Hyperthyroidism due to excess thyroid hormone (uncommon).
What treatments are available for pituitary disorders?
Detecting these conditions and treating with the right hormones to correct the deficiency is complex but manageable. Different methods of replacement are available and form an important discussion to be had with your Endocrinologist.
Monitoring for complications and side effects of treatment is also equally important and diligent follow up is necessary to avoid complications.
We also manage other conditions that are related to glandular dysfunction outside the pituitary including but not limited to:
- Addisons disease
- Primary Hyperparathyroidism
- Carcinoid Tumours.
These conditions are not common but can often be missed. Endocrinologists are trained to detect and manage these conditions including rare disorders which we discuss in our seminars in the practice. Furthermore, our practice is part of a larger network of Endocrinologists that work together with centres of excellence like Alfred Hospital and Monash Medical Centre.