39-year-old Suhib endured blurry and severely impacted vision for half a year, despite various Doctor consultations. His symptoms prevailed until an MRI finally revealed the presence of a pituitary tumor.
Suhib was partially blind in one eye, when he visited Consultant Neurosurgeon – Brain & Spine – Dr. Tommaso Tufo at Fakeeh University Hospital, who meticulously assessed the case and confirmed that Suhib had a relatively rare condition—a 3cm cystic pituitary tumor. The size of the tumor was noteworthy considering the limited space within the pituitary gland – a small but powerful organ located at the base of the brain. A crucial part of the body's endocrine system, it produces hormones that affect various bodily functions.
Given the case’s complexity, a multidisciplinary approach was adopted, involving specialists from Neurosurgery, ENT, and Endocrinology departments. Dr. Tommaso Tufo and Consultant Endocrinologist Dr. Ahmed Hassoun performed a thorough evaluation of the tumor and pituitary gland function.
Suhib was advised to have immediate surgery due to the tumors’ impact on the optic nerve. The 3 cm tumor was successfully removed through a minimally invasive endoscopic approach.
"The collaboration between our team of experts and utilization of advanced surgical techniques enabled the removal of tumor while preserving the pituitary gland. Different techniques can be used for tumor removal; however, we have the expertise and technology to handle complex cases using minimally invasive methods. Witnessing immediate improvement in Suhib’s vision was truly rewarding,” said Dr. Tufo.
Reflecting on his journey, Suheib expressed gratitude for the exceptional multidisciplinary care he received at FUH, he said, "I am grateful for the exceptional care and expertise at FUH. From the initial consultations to post surgery care, the Doctors, and nurses at FUH have been supportive and always ready to assist. The surgeons are experts in their respective fields and made me feel at ease despite undergoing complex surgery. Thank you, Dr. Tufo, Dr. Hassoun, Dr. Ojeda and to the nurses, I will forever be grateful for the care I received. “
The tumor was accessed through the nose, with assistance from Specialist Otolaryngology (ENT Surgeon) Dr. Guiovanny Ojeda. “An ENT surgeon’s role in such surgeries is to operate in conjunction with the Neurosurgeon – to give access to the Pituitary lesion. While this may sound scary, this approach is safe and effective enabling faster recovery for the patients,” said Dr. Guiovanny Ojeda. Cutting edge technology and surgical expertise of Dr. Ojeda and Dr. Tufo ensured safe removal of the tumor without damaging the delicate pituitary gland.
Emphasizing the importance of a multi-disciplinary team Dr. Ahmed Hassoun cited, “Conducting a thorough evaluation of the pituitary gland's functionality and hormone levels was essential in determining the most suitable treatment plan for Suheib. The successful outcome of this surgery demonstrates the importance of a multidisciplinary approach in treating pituitary tumors.
After the successful surgery, Suheib noticed immediate improvement in his vision. He was discharged within 3 three days of postoperative care and resumed work less than a month after. He continues regular follow-up with Dr. Tufo, Dr. Hassoun and Dr. Ojeda, however his vision has improved significantly. Suheib now anticipates a better future with improved vision and overall well-being.
A pituitary tumor is an abnormal growth in the pituitary gland, responsible for regulating hormones that control vital body functions. The exact cause of pituitary tumors is often unknown, but genetic factors and rare conditions may increase the risk. Symptoms include headaches, vision problems, hormonal imbalances, fatigue, and weight loss.
Treatment involves a multidisciplinary approach, with options like medication or surgery. Minimally invasive endoscopic techniques allow for shorter recovery times and minimal scarring. With proper treatment and follow-up care, most patients recover and maintain a good quality of life.
It is crucial to ensure consultation with a healthcare professional upon experiencing symptoms like blurred vision or persistent headaches. While discovering a tumor might be scary, early diagnosis and treatment are key to attaining positive outcomes.