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J Neurosurg. 2007 Jun;106(6):980-7.

Gamma Knife surgery for Cushing's disease.

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1
Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, Virginia 22908-00212, USA.

Abstract

OBJECT:

In this study the authors address the efficacy and safety of Gamma Knife surgery (GKS) in patients with adrenocorticotropic hormone-secreting pituitary adenomas.

METHODS:

A review of data collected from a prospective GKS database between January 1990 and March 2005 was performed in patients with Cushing's disease. All but one patient underwent resection for a pituitary tumor, without achieving remission. Successful endocrine outcome after GKS was defined as a normal 24-hour urinary free cortisol (UFC) concentration posttreatment after a minimum of 1 year of follow up. Patient records were also evaluated for changes in tumor volume, development of new hormone deficiencies, visual acuity, cranial nerve neuropathies, and radiation-induced imaging changes. Ninety evaluable patients had undergone GKS, with a mean endocrine follow-up duration of 45 months (range 12-132 months). The mean dose, to the tumor margin was 23 Gy (median 25 Gy). Normal 24-hour UFC levels were achieved in 49 patients (54%), with an average time of 13 months after treatment (range 2-67 months). In the 49 patients in whom a tumor was visible on the planning magnetic resonance (MR) image, a decrease in tumor size occurred in 39 (80%), in seven patients there was to change in size, and tumor growth occurred in three patients. Ten patients (20%) experienced a relapse of Cushing's disease after initial remission; the mean time to recurrence was 27 months (range 6-60 months). Seven of these patients underwent repeated GKS, with three patients achieving a second remission. New hormone deficiencies developed in 20 patients (22%), with hypothyroidism being the most common endocrinopathy after GKS. Five patients experienced new visual deficits or third, fourth, or sixth cranial nerve deficits; two of these patients had undergone prior conventional fractionated radiation therapy, and four of them had received previous GKS. Radiation-induced changes were observed on MR images in three patients; one had symptoms attributable to these changes.

CONCLUSIONS:

Gamma Knife surgery is an effective treatment for persistent Cushing's disease. Adenomas with cavernous sinus invasion that are not amenable to resection are treatable with the Gamma Knife. A second GKS treatment appears to increase the risk of cranial nerve damage. These results demonstrate the value of combining two neurosurgical treatment modalities-microsurgical resection and GKS-in the management of pituitary adenomas.

Comment in

PMID:
17564168
DOI:
10.3171/jns.2007.106.6.980
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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