Child's Nervous System

, Volume 34, Issue 9, pp 1691–1696 | Cite as

Pituitary adenomas in children and young adults

  • Kara Leigh Krajewski
  • Roman Rotermund
  • Jörg Flitsch
Original Paper



Pituitary adenomas are rare in the pediatric population. We present a recent cohort of children operated transsphenoidally on pituitary adenoma from a single center.


Inclusion criteria were age < 21 years and histopathological diagnosis of adenoma after transsphenoidal surgery. The electronic file was used for prospective and retrospective data collection on symptoms, pituitary function before/after surgical intervention, and surgical complications. Surgical reports were used for assessment of resection grade. Follow-up data were collected from outpatient clinical visit and/or correspondence concerning pituitary function and MRI.


Among 962 consecutive patients who underwent transsphenoidal surgery at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (Germany) between April 2013–December 2016, 50 patients (5.2%) were 21 years old or younger (range 6–21 years, mean 16.5). Twenty-five (50%) patients had pituitary adenomas; M:F = 13:12. Eight were macroadenomas (> 1cm3). Time from onset of symptoms to first operation had a range of 0–48 months (mean 18.5 months). Nine (36%) patients overall complained of headaches preoperatively. One patient had objective (hemianopsia) and four subjective visual disturbances preoperatively. Histopathological diagnosis revealed 13 (52%) ACTH adenomas, 5 (20%) prolactinomas, 3 (12%) mixed GH-prolactinoma, 1 (4%) GH adenoma, 2 (8%) TSH-producing adenomas, and 1 (4%) non-functioning adenoma. There were no surgical complications. On clinical follow-up (range 1–34.5 months, mean 11.7 months), 21/24 (88%) patients with hormonally active tumors were in biochemical remission by surgery alone; 2 patients with Cushing disease and 1 with GH-hypersecretion required further treatment.


Our recent series confirms the effectiveness and safety of transsphenoidal surgery, especially in the pediatric patient population.


Pituitary adenomas Children Cushing disease Transsphenoidal surgery 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflict of interest to disclose.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of NeurosurgeryUniversity Medical Center UKSH-LübeckLübeckGermany
  2. 2.Department of NeurosurgeryUniversity Medical Center Hamburg-EppendorfHamburgGermany

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