Should someone have a lumbar puncture if the have a pituitary tumor?


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  • What is a lumbar puncture?
A lumbar puncture is an invasive medical procedure where a sample of fluid is taken from inside the lower spine for testing.

The process involves a needle being inserted in between the two vertebrae found at the bottom of your spine, from which Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is then drawn out.

  • Why?

Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is a transparent fluid used to support the brain and spinal cord. Just as doctors can analyze blood samples for irregularities in a patient's health, by studying CSF medical professionals are able to attain a great deal of information about an individual's brain and nervous system.

  • The pituitary gland
Commonly, lumbar punctures are carried out to a diagnose suspected cases of subarachnoid hemorrhage (bleeding on the brain), inflammation of the nervous system and meningitis.

The information deduced from a lumbar puncture may be also used to detect tumors within the pituitary gland. A small but important endocrine gland found near the brain, the pituitary secretes a number of hormones that affect a person's bodily functions.

The pituitary gland is formed of two parts, known as the anterior and posterior lobes, with each specific lobe responsible for releasing certain hormones.

  • Help and advice

If you have any concerns about cancer or a lumber puncture procedure, it is recommended that you always consult your doctor or speak to a qualified health professional.

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