Study Finds Repeated Transsphenoidal Surgery Effective in Treating Cushing’s Disease

According to a story from Cushing’s Disease News, a recent study has confirmed that repeated transsphenoidal surgery can be effective in treating Cushing’s disease in patients that have experienced remission with the procedure before. A repeat procedure can induce high rates of sustained remission from disease symptoms. The procedure has long been considered the first line, standard treatment approach, but recurrence is not uncommon. A repeat operation is an option for patients that experience recurrence, but there haven’t been many studies that have assessed the long term effectiveness of a second surgery.

About Cushing’s Disease

Cushing’s disease is just one possible cause of Cushing syndrome, which is a medical condition that appears as the result of prolonged cortisol exposure. Cushing’s syndrome is most commonly caused by the use of medications such as corticosteroids, but Cushing’s disease is caused by the presence of a tumor called a pituitary adenoma. The disease is also associated with diabetes, which is a common comorbidity. The syndrome can cause a variety of symptoms that can become more serious over time including cerebral atrophy, hypercholesterolemia, rapid weight gain, baldness, mood instability, depression, hirsutism, sexual dysfunction, muscle and bone weakness, menstrual abnormalities, osteoporosis, diabetes, hypertension, sleep problems, and immune system suppression, and memory problems. The most common treatment for Cushing’s disease is surgery to remove tumors or affected glands. To learn more about the illness, click here.

About The Study

The researchers looked at a pool of 120 patients who were treated with transsphenoidal surgery, including 15 who had a repeat surgery. These patients also has a year long follow up period and initially experienced disease remission that lasted at least three months. 13 of these patients had evidence of a tumor following the first operation. The median time until symptoms began to recur was around 6.5 years. 

This info was combined with data from another 36 patients that had undergone repeat surgery. With these two groups combined, 35 patients had evidence of a tumor.

35 of the 51 patients achieved remission after repeat surgery. Four patients that at first saw remission ultimately experienced recurrence again. Ultimately, these results suggest that repeat transsphenoidal surgery is a viable option that has a good chance to induce sustained remission for many patients with Cushing’s disease.

Check out the original study here.


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