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Transsphenoidal surgery is a specialized treatment for pituitary tumors, which account for 10-15% of all brain tumors. In New Jersey and New York, IGEA Brain, Spine & Orthopedics offers this cutting-edge treatment option for patients from throughout the tri-state area.

About Pituitary Tumors

Pituitary glands produce hormones, which carry chemical information to organs throughout the body. When pituitary tumors form, they begin in the sella, a boney cavity surrounding the pituitary gland. Tumors can interfere with hormone production and cause widespread deficiencies or abundances of certain hormones. Therefore, the precise symptoms of a pituitary tumor will depend on the specific set of hormones that are over- or under-produced. And because pituitary tumors press against brain tissue as they grow, they may also cause symptoms like:

  • Chronic headaches, occurring at least three times or more per week
  • Loss of peripheral vision, also called tunnel vision
  • Unfocused or blurred vision

What Is Transsphenoidal Surgery?

Small pituitary tumors may be successfully treated through transsphenoidal surgery. Transsphenoidal means through the sphenoid, as the procedure is performed through the sphenoid sinus, a cavity behind your nose.

Our surgeons use a fiber-optic endoscope, or high-powered microscope, to view, access, and remove the tumor with a minimal number of incisions. This often leads to faster recovery times and less risk of infection and other complications. Patients typically see excellent surgical outcomes with few long-term effects from the procedure itself.

Different Approaches of Transsphenoidal Surgery

While all forms of transsphenoidal surgery have a goal of removing a pituitary tumor, IGEA Brain, Spine & Orthopedics may take one of three approaches to perform the procedure. These include:

  • Direct trans-nasal: This approach enters the sphenoid sinus through the rear wall of the nose. It requires less bandaging after the operation.
  • Nasal wall: Surgeons may also make an incision in the front of the nasal wall. They then tunnel back into the sphenoid sinus.
  • Gumline: Surgeons make an incision where the gum line meets the inner upper lip, using this opening to access the sphenoid sinus.

Once we have accessed the sphenoid sinus, we carefully remove portions of bone to open the sella wall. Surgeons then utilize state-of-the-art instrumentation to detach the tumor. We then replace bone fragments to re-seal the sella wall and may also graft fatty tissue from the abdomen to seal the septum, protecting your sinus and nasal cavities from cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leakage.

After surgery, our physicians will monitor your vital signs and ensure no complications from surgery. Most patients are released after one to two days in the hospital. You may be prescribed medication to relieve pain or regulate hormone levels, and you’ll also receive post-surgery instructions to support your recovery at home.

Schedule a Consultation in New Jersey or New York

If you are seeking an accurate diagnosis or have already been diagnosed with a pituitary tumor, you can find superior care at IGEA Brain, Spine & Orthopedics. Home to board-certified surgeons, we’re standing by to address your pituitary tumor and determine whether transsphenoidal surgery is right for you. For more information, request an appointment or contact us in New Jersey or New York.

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