Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Pituitary Adenomas

Eur Radiol. 2005 Mar;15(3):543-8. doi: 10.1007/s00330-004-2531-x. Epub 2004 Dec 31.

Abstract

Today, MR is the only method needed for the morphological investigation of endocrine-active pituitary adenomas. In acromegaly and Cushing's syndrome, the therapeutic attitude is directly dictated by MR data. We present the MR aspect of pituitary adenomas according to size, sex, age, endocrine activity and a few particular conditions such as hemorrhagic pituitary adenomas, pituitary adenomas during pregnancy, cavernous sinus invasion and postsurgical changes. When an intrasellar mass extending out of the sella turcica is detected, the goal of the MR examination is to indicate precisely the origin of the tumor, its extension in relation to the various surrounding structures, its structure and its enhancement in order to help in the differential diagnosis. Demonstration of very small pituitary adenomas remains a challenge. When SE T1- and Turbo SE T2-weighted sequences are non-diagnostic, enhanced imaging becomes mandatory; half-dose gadolinium injection, delayed sequence, dynamic imaging can be of some help.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenoma / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / pathology*