Introduction: Neurohypophysis tumors also called pituicytomas are very rare low grade gliomas of the brain that developed in the posterior part of the pituitary gland. Our aim is to report two cases whose diagnosis was made by MRI in the first case and by histology in the second case.
Cases reports: Observation No. 1: a woman aged 33 consulted for polyuria and polydypsia due to central diabetes insipidus without pituitary insufficiency. The MRI discovered a 7 mm well limited tumor in the posterior part of the pituitary gland. According to different investigations a primary lesion was more likely than breast, thyroid, pulmonary or genital metastasis.
Observation 2: a man aged 55, consulted for headaches and decrease in visual acuity. Brain MRI showed an invasive pituitary tumor measuring 55×32 mm. Hormonal exploration argued for global pituitary insufficiency without any impairment of post hypophysis function, although the tumor was posterior. Histological exam argued for a pituicytoma.
Conclusion: Neurohyophysis tumors are very rare as less than 40 cases have been reported. They may be very small with diabetes insipidus as the only manifestation or be large or even huge with ophtalmological troubles and pituitary insufficiency without diabetes insipidus in spite of the posterior location as in our second observation. Surgery seems to be the best treatment for large tumors, but for small tumors wait and see attitude may also be another solution as these tumors grow slowly and are usually more vascularized than the anterior ones which makes the surgery more difficult and sometimes too risky.
Declaration of interest: The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest that could be perceived as prejudicing the impartiality of the research project.
Funding: This research did not receive any specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sector.
05 - 09 May 2012
European Society of Endocrinology