Pituitary adenomas are common neuroendocrine neoplasms arising from adenohypophysial cells. Recent progress in our understanding of pituitary tumorigenesis as well as pathways involved in molecular cytodifferentiation of the adenohypophysis has impacted on the classification of pituitary adenomas. The detailed comprehensive classification of pituitary adenomas is now well recognized to reflect specific clinical features and genetic changes that predict targeted treatments, as well as prognostic information for patients with pituitary adenomas. Therefore, the clinical responsibility of pathologists is not only limited to the distinction of pituitary adenomas from other sellar lesions, but also to provide a comprehensive subtype classification using appropriate ancillary tools. In this article, we highlight an approach to clinical diagnosis and pitfalls in the classification of these common neoplasms.
© 2012 The Authors; Brain Pathology © 2012 International Society of Neuropathology.