Demonstration of High Coincidence of Pituitary Adenoma in Patients with Ruptured Rathke’s Cleft Cyst

Authors: Hidetoshi Ikeda, Genichiro Ohhashi
Source: Research Institute for Pituitary Disease, Southern Tohoku General Hospital, 7-115 Yatsuyamada, Koriyama, Fukushima 963-8563, Japan



Repeated chronic inflammation, such as under circumstances of ruptured Rathke’s cleft cyst(RCC), is known as the fundamental basis of various pathological changes including neoplastic change,therefore to examine accurate incidence of pituitary adenomas is important for the preventive medicine.

Materials and methods

As a prospective study, patients were initially screened by the symptoms such as periodic headache and dizziness together with the abnormal findings such as seller floor bone defect on3D-CT. Those screened patients who showed abnormal basal pituitary hormone values were addition-ally examined by several loading test and 3 T magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) by three-dimensional reconstructions of Flair cube images. The presence of pituitary adenomas was evaluated by composite3T MRI and11C methionine MET positron-emission tomography imaging. Immunohistochemical studies were employed for surgical biopsy specimens to demonstrate hormone production.


308 cases of RCC were diagnosed by both radiologic and intraoperative findings. Pathological examination confirmed 111 pituitary adenomas in 106 patients with ruptured RCC, therefore the rate of coincidence was revealed 34%. In 78 patients with abnormalities of pituitary hormone secretion, MET uptake was observed in the pituitary gland and verified pituitary adenoma pathologically. In addition,28 adenomas were verified without MET-PET study on pathological examination only, for a total of 106 cases.


High coincidence (34%) of ruptured RCC and pituitary adenomas was demonstrated, which is a proof that ruptured RCC is contributed to a risk factor of pituitary adenoma.
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