Mortality in patients with non-functioning pituitary adenoma

Metaxia Tampourlou, Athanasios Fountas, Georgia Ntali, Niki Karavitaki

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Non-functioning pituitary adenomas (NFA) are benign pituitary neoplasms not associated with clinical evidence of hormonal hypersecretion. A substantial number of patients with NFA have morbidities related to the tumour and possible recurrence(s), as well as to the treatments offered. Studies assessing the long-term mortality of patients with NFA are limited. Based on the published literature of the last two decades, overall, the standardized mortality ratios in this group suggest mortality higher than that of the general population with deaths attributed mainly to circulatory, respiratory and infectious causes. Women seem to have higher mortality ratios, and assessment of time trends suggests improvement over the years. There is no consensus on predictive factors of mortality but those most consistently identified are older age at diagnosis and high doses of glucocorticoid substitution therapy. Well designed and of adequate power studies are needed to establish the significance of factors compromising the survival of patients with NFA and to facilitate improvements in long-term prognosis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203–207
Issue number2
Early online date17 Jan 2018
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018


  • non-functioning pituitary adenomas
  • mortality
  • hypopituitarism


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