According to epidemiological studies, the prevalence of pituitary adenomas is 16.5% and the majority of them are "incidentalomas". The symptoms of pituitary disorders are often non-specific; disturbances of pituitary function, compression symptoms, hypophysis apoplexy or accidental findings may help the diagnosis. The hormonal evaluation of pituitary adenomas is different from the algorithm used in the disorders of peripheral endocrine organs. The first-line therapy of prolactinomas are the dopamine agonists, and the aims of the treatment are to normalize the prolactin level, restore fertility in child-bearing age, decrease tumor mass, save or improve the residual pituitary function and inhibit the relapse of the disease. The available dopamine agonists in Hungary are bromocriptine and quinagolide. In case of tumors with good therapeutic response, medical therapy can be withdrawn after 3-5 years; hyperprolactinemia will not recur in 2/3 of these patients. Neurosurgery is the primary therapy of GH-, ACTH-, TSH-producing and inactive adenomas. In the last decades, significant improvement has been reached in surgical procedures, resulting in low mortality rates. Acromegalic patients with unresectable tumors have a great benefit from somatostatin analog treatment. The growth hormone receptor antagonist pegvisomant is the newest modality for the treatment of acromegaly. The medical therapy of Cushing's disease is still based on the inhibition of steroid production. A new, promising somatostatin analog, pasireotide is evaluated in clinical trials. The rare TSH-producing tumor can respond to both dopamine agonist and somatostatin analog therapy. The application of conventional radiotherapy has decreased; radiotherapy is mainly used in the treatment of invasive, incurable or malignant tumors. Further studies are needed to elucidate the exact role of radiosurgery and fractionated stereotaxic irradiation in the treatment of pituitary tumors.
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