Pituitary Adenoma and Papillary Craniopharyngioma: A Rare Case of Collision Tumor and Review of the Literature

World Neurosurg. 2020 Jul;139:63-69. doi: 10.1016/j.wneu.2020.03.088. Epub 2020 Apr 13.


Background: Pituitary adenomas are the most common lesion of the sellar region. Very few cases in the literature have described their association with craniopharyngiomas in the same anatomic compartment, an entity defined as collision tumors of the sella.

Case description: A 35-year-old man presented with headaches and progressive visual disturbances. Radiographic imaging initially highlighted the presence of a pituitary craniopharyngioma. An endoscopic transsphenoidal pituitary approach was performed, during which the tumor was partially resected. The pathology report was positive for 2 entities: a nonfunctioning pituitary adenoma and a papillary craniopharyngioma. This was an unexpected diagnosis based on the surgical and initial radiologic findings.

Conclusions: To our knowledge, this is the first documented case of a collision tumor of the sella comprising a pituitary adenoma and a craniopharyngioma of the papillary type.

Keywords: Adenoma; Collision; Craniopharyngioma; Pituitary.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenoma / complications
  • Adenoma / diagnostic imaging
  • Adenoma / pathology
  • Adenoma / surgery*
  • Adult
  • Craniopharyngioma / complications
  • Craniopharyngioma / diagnostic imaging
  • Craniopharyngioma / pathology
  • Craniopharyngioma / surgery*
  • Headache / etiology
  • Hemianopsia / etiology
  • Humans
  • Hypogonadism / etiology
  • Hypogonadism / metabolism
  • Male
  • Neoplasms, Multiple Primary / diagnostic imaging
  • Neoplasms, Multiple Primary / pathology
  • Neoplasms, Multiple Primary / surgery*
  • Neuroendoscopy*
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / complications
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / pathology
  • Pituitary Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf / genetics
  • Sphenoid Bone
  • Vision Disorders / etiology


  • BRAF protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf