Treating Pituitary Disorders with Radiation Therapy

If you have a pituitary disorder, radiation therapy is one treatment option. It can be used before surgery, after surgery or instead of surgery. Radiation can shrink a pituitary tumor or keep it from getting larger. You can usually have radiation therapy without staying overnight in the hospital.

The OHSU Northwest Pituitary Center uses the most advanced equipment available for radiation therapy. The machine, called a stereotactic linear accelerator, uses the Novalis Tx system. The Novalis Tx is also used to treat brain tumors and other conditions that require precise treatment. It is the most precise and powerful medical technology available in the country. Because the Novalis Tx system is very precise, it destroys tumor cells while protecting healthy tissue nearby. A laser guides the radiation beam, and a CT scan beam shows your healthcare team the precise location of the tumor before each treatment.

After you finish radiation treatments, you have imaging studies (CT scans or MR images) every 3 months for 2 years. After that, you have imaging studies every year. You also see your doctor and have vision exams and blood tests to check your pituitary gland. Continuing to see your doctor after radiation is complete helps you get the best possible results from your pituitary treatment.

The OHSU Brain and OHSU Knight Cancer Institute work collaboratively on brain and pituitary cancers.