, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 37–45 | Cite as

Physicians’ awareness of gadolinium retention and MRI timing practices in the longitudinal management of pituitary tumors: a “Pituitary Society” survey

  • Lisa B. Nachtigall
  • Niki Karavitaki
  • Katja Kiseljak-Vassiliades
  • Luma Ghalib
  • Hidenori Fukuoka
  • Luis V. Syro
  • Daniel Kelly
  • Maria FleseriuEmail author



In view of mounting attention related to possible brain retention of gadolinium-based contrast agents (GBCAs) in patients with normal renal function, our purpose was to detail results from a survey of pituitary experts to assess: 1) the timing interval and frequency of pituitary magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) following surgical and/or medical and/or radiation therapy of pituitary tumors, 2) awareness of the types of GBCAs used and their possible safety issues.


The Pituitary Society Education Committee composed a survey with 12 multiple choice questions, 8 of which specifically addressed the time interval and frequency of MRI in the longitudinal management of pituitary tumors. The survey was distributed at two meetings; the International Pituitary Neurosurgeons Society conference in San Diego, CA, on February 18th, 2018, and the Pituitary Society Membership and Career Development Forum, Chicago, IL on March 18th, 2018.


There is consensus among pituitary endocrinologists and neurosurgeons that long-term repeated imaging is recommended in most pituitary tumors, although the precise strategy of timing varied depending on the specialist group and the specific clinical context of the adenoma. The data also suggest that International Pituitary Neurosurgeons Society neurosurgeons, as well as Pituitary Society neuroendocrinologists, are sometimes unaware of which contrast agents are used by their institution, and many are also unaware that evidence of long-term brain retention has been reported with the use of GBCAs in patients with normal function.


International pituitary endocrinologists and pituitary neurosurgeons experts suggest ongoing MRIs for the management of pituitary tumors; strategies vary based on clinical context, but also on individual experience and practice.


Contrast Gadolinium Safety Pituitary Tumor Imaging Adenoma Neuroendocrinologists Neurosurgeons Survey 



No funding has been received for this project.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest for this project.

Supplementary material

11102_2018_924_MOESM1_ESM.docx (21 kb)
Appendix: Questionnaire; questions 1–12. Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 21 KB)


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Neuroendocrine Unit, Massachusetts General HospitalHarvard Medical School BostonBostonUSA
  2. 2.Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research, College of Medical and Dental Sciences, Centre for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Birmingham Health PartnersUniversity of BirminghamBirminghamUK
  3. 3.Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Diabetes, Department of MedicineUniversity of Colorado School of Medicine at Colorado Anschutz Medical CampusAuroraUSA
  4. 4.Division of EndocrinologyOhio State UniversityColumbusUSA
  5. 5.Division of Diabetes and EndocrinologyKobe University HospitalKobeJapan
  6. 6.Department of NeurosurgeryHospital Pablo Tobon Uribe and Clinica MedellinMedellínColombia
  7. 7.Pacific Neuroscience Institute & John Wayne Cancer InstituteSanta MonicaUSA
  8. 8.Departments of Medicine and Neurological Surgery, Northwest Pituitary CenterOregon Health & Science UniversityPortlandUSA

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