Tuesday, January 15, 2008

How to Live With A Pituitary Tumor


A pituitary tumor can affect a person's ability to function and maintain a good attitude. The cortisol imbalance that a pituitary tumor can produce can cause severe depression and mood swings. Hypothyroidism can impair concentration, memory and other mental functions. These effects of a pituitary tumor must be evaluated and cognitive rehabilitation therapy may be necessary to provide coping strategies.


Difficulty: Challenging



Step One

Continue to try other treatments if one plan is not effective. Even if the tumor is not completely eliminated, every bit of reduction can make you feel better. If the tumor continues to resist several different forms of treatment, it may become necessary to consider discontinuing future treatments.

Step Two

Determine the point at which you would want to become as comfortable as possible with the time you have left. If you decide to continue fighting the cancer, it is important to understand your reasons for doing so. Your doctor should be able to estimate your response to a given treatment.

Step Three

Ask for and receive palliative treatment for your symptoms, especially pain. Palliative treatment will probably not cure the pituitary tumor; its purpose is to improve your quality of life. Radiation or chemotherapy may be given to shrink the tumor to relieve symptoms even when this is not expected to cure the cancer.

Step Four

Consider the benefits of hospice care. This can usually be done at home and the focus will be on living life as fully as possible at this difficult stage. You can still receive treatment at the same time.

Step Five

Maintain hope even if the possibility of a cure is not high. This is an opportunity to focus on what is most important to you in life and stop doing what is no longer important to you.

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