Does pituitary radiotherapy increase the risk of stroke and, if so, what preventative actions should be taken?

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Colleges, School and Institutes


Radiotherapy for pituitary adenomas is a well-established and effective treatment, but it has been linked to a number of complications, including an increased risk of cerebrovascular disease and mortality. Possible underlying mechanisms include the direct effects of radiation on cerebral vasculature and deficiencies in specific pituitary hormones. Higher administered dose of radiotherapy is one of the main predictors of stroke. Although treatment strategies for stroke prevention in patients treated with pituitary radiotherapy have not been studied, using the lowest effective radiation dose and ensuring hormone deficiencies are adequately treated may be beneficial in reducing the risk of stroke.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)328-31
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Endocrinology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2012