Pulmonary Hypertension

POSTOPERATIVE MANAGEMENT FOLLOWING PITUITARY SURGERY Dr M.Heidarpour ACE July 2015 INTRODUCTION Pituitary lesions are common in the general population with approximately 15 to 20% of

individuals having evidence of an identifiable lesion on brain imaging . As recently documented in the Central Brain Tumor Registry of the United States, pituitary tumors are the second most common brain pathology observed. Pituitary lesions can present with mass

effects (headaches, visual loss, cranial nerve dysfunction), pituitary hormonal hypersecretion or hormonal deficiency. Although medical therapy is typically considered first line for prolactinomas, surgery is generally considered the treatment of choice for other endocrine-active pituitary adenomas (acromegaly, Cushing disease, and

thyrotrope adenomas), as well as clinically nonfunctioning adenomas, pituitary apoplexy, Rathke cleft cysts, craniopharyngiomas, and other parasellar tumors such as meningiomas and clival chordomas. The decision to proceed with neurosurgical tumor resection can be quite complex and is best considered in a multidisciplinary clinical setting.

Once the decision has been made to consider postoperative management of the patient. Although a minority of patients with giant adenomas and/or invasive suprasellar adenomas may require a craniotomy, the vast majority (over 95%) of pituitary adenomas are best treated by transsphenoidal surgery (TSS).

Over the last 15 years, TSS is increasingly being performed using an endonasal endoscopic technique, often in a collaborative effort including a neurosurgeon and otolaryngologist . While there is some evidence that the more panoramic endoscopic view leads to higher rates of complete tumor removal than the traditional microscopic view .

It remains to be proven whether the endoscopic approach results in higher remission rates for functional adenomas such as those causing acromegaly or Cushing disease. Postoperative management following tumor removal utilizing any approach or technique includes: 1. immediate inpatient assessment

2. short-term assessment for pituitary hormone recovery or deficits. 3. development of a long-term surveillance plan for tumor/lesion recurrence and endocrine status. PREOPERATIVE EVALUATION All patients with sellar/suprasellar lesions Require: 1. medical history 2.

physical exam including formal neuroophthalmologic assessment with formal visual field testing if the MRI shows evidence that the tumor is abutting or compressing the optic chiasm. 3. evaluation for potential medical comorbidities. 4. functioning tumor (e.g., prolactinoma, acromegaly, Cushing disease, or the rarely encountered thyrotropin-secreting tumor) 5.Hypopituitarism prior to development of the treatment plan.

Typical preoperative baseline endocrine testing includes: measurement of serum prolactin assessment of hypercortisolism if there is clinical suspicion of Cushingnsyndrome measurement of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-I) with further assessment of growth hormone (GH) hypersecretion for acromegaly as indicated. Preoperative prolactin measurements are essential, as medical therapy with

dopamine agonists is the preferred initial treatment modality for prolactinoma patients . Sample dilution may be required in patients with large tumors and minimally elevated prolactin levels to rule out the hook effect that can be seen in some laboratory assays, leading to artificially low prolactin levels. Assessment of pituitary hypofunction includes 1. hypothyroidism (thyroid-stimulating hormone and free

thyroxine) 2. hypogonadism (serum testosterone in males; folliclestimulating hormone/luteinizing hormone, estradiol in a premenopausal woman with history of oligomenorrhea/ amenorrhea or postmenopausal females) 3. adrenal insufficiency (there are a number of protocols used including measurement of morning serum cortisol and cosyntropin stimulation testing).

It is imperative that adrenocortical and thyroid status be evaluated prior to surgery to initiate appropriate hormonal replacement pre- and perioperatively if a deficiency is identified. It is important to recognize adrenal insufficiency preoperatively to ensure

glucocorticoid coverage during surgery. It is likely important to identify hypothyroidism, as replacement may prevent potential surgical complications (i.e., cardiac dysfunction, hyponatremia, postoperative ileus) Although found far less common in pituitary adenoma patients at initial presentation, diabetes insipidus (DI) can occur, particularly

in concert with suprasellar lesions such as craniopharyngiomas, and needs to be identified and managed preoperatively. A careful history, along with measurement of serum electrolytes and urine specific gravity, will often alert the clinician to this condition. Ideally, all patients will receive replacement hormonal therapy for adrenal insufficiency, hypothyroidism or DI if indicated prior to surgery. however, it may not be prudent to delay surgery to achieve normal replacement levels

(i.e., hypothyroidism) in all cases. Initiation of sex steroid and GH replacement therapy is typically deferred until a later point in the postoperative management. patients are generally evaluated for other potential comorbidities including diabetes mellitus and

cardiopulmonary disease that should be addressed prior to surgery. Patients with acromegaly and Cushing disease are particularly prone to have associated cardiovascular and metabolic comorbidities such as: diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and cardiac dysfunction and may benefit from preoperative medical management. There is debate regarding preoperative treatment of acromegaly or Cushing disease

with hormone- lowering medications prior to surgical intervention. Currently, there is no consensus on the preoperative treatment of these diseases to improve surgical cure rate, but there may be a role in improving comorbidities and reducing complications. PERIOPERATIVE MANAGEMENT

.All patients with adrenal insufficiency identified preoperatively should be treated with stress-dose glucocorticoid treatment both periand postoperatively, with postoperative testing for endogenous production only if there is likelihood for a return to normal hypothalamicpituitary-adrenal axis function. For patients with normal preoperative adrenal function: 1. glucocorticoids may be administered perioperatively to cover for potential iatrogenic adrenal insufficiency.

2. However, protocols in many centers involve steroid sparing management both peri- and postoperatively to avoid unnecessary exposure to glucocorticoids if possible. Preoperative glucocorticoids in cushing disease

Preoperative glucocorticoid replacement is not necessary unless cortisol production has been blocked by adrenal enzyme inhibitors. In this instance, the patient should be treated like a patient with adrenal insufficiency. .uptodate Practice patterns are variable: 1.

Some surgeons do not administer glucocorticoids. 2. others give higher than normal glucocorticoid replacement intraoperatively and for one to three days postoperatively to avoid symptoms and signs of acute steroid withdrawal . There have been no comparisons of the benefits of one or the other approach. One typical regimen is dexamethasone 0.5 mg every six hours for four doses only, eg, only 24 hours of glucocorticoid therapy.

.uptodate Perioperative glucocorticoid therapy entails virtually no risk for the patient, except that it must be stopped for 24 hours before serum cortisol can be measured to assess cure. Glucocorticoid replacement can be held for a few days, with careful observation for the development of adrenal insufficiency.

.uptodate Other complications, apart from surgicallyrelated morbidity, include venous thrombosis and infection, which occurred in four and one patients, respectively. Since the risk of thromboembolic complications is increased in Cushing's syndrome, perioperative prophylaxis seems

warranted in patients who are not ambulatory within a few days of surgery . .uptodate POSTOPERATIVE MANAGEMENT The general framework for postoperative management of patients undergoing pituitary tumor surgery can be considered to occur in 2 main phases: early postoperative period longer term outpatient follow-up period, * initial outpatient management * long-term observation

Early Postoperative Management The postoperative inpatient stay typically lasts from 1 to 3 nights . Serious complications following pituitary adenoma surgery are relatively uncommon, particularly with an experienced surgical team. TSS patients warrant careful monitoring for at

least the first postoperative night and then typically in a monitored bed. At many pituitary centers, Foley catheters are removed after surgery, and arterial lines are not routinely used. More invasive monitoring may be used selectively for patients with significant

medical comorbidities or those with large or complex parasellar lesions (e.g., giant or highly invasive pituitary adenomas, craniopharyngiomas, and meningiomas). Major complications in the immediate postoperative period after TSS can be categorized into surgical and endocrine.

The most serious early surgical complications(typically seen within 24-48 hours of surgery) include sellar hematoma, often with associated visual loss, diplopia, and/or headache and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leak. Hydrocephalus, meningitis, sinusitis, and epistaxis may develop within the first 1 to 3 weeks after surgery.

Patients should be monitored closely for potential neurologic or ophthalmologic deterioration using serial visual field assessments and neurologic exam, particularly in the first 24 hours following surgery. An early postoperative CT or sellar MRI should be performed in any patient with a new or worsened neurological deficit 1.

visual deterioration or diplopia, 2. significant rhinorrhea 3. suspected CSF leak. Although not performed routinely at all centers, sellar imaging within 24 hours of surgery can also be useful to assess: skull base reconstruction integrity degree of pneumocephalus and for the presence of a sellar or

suprasellar hematoma particularly after removal of larg macroadenoma, craniopharyngioma, or suprasellar meningioma. The most important potential endocrine complications in the immediate postoperative period include: 1. fluid and electrolyte abnormalities 2. acute adrenal insufficiency

Alterations in sodium and fluid balance are relatively common in the early postoperative phase. These include alterations in arginine vasopressin/antidiuretic hormone (ADH), either insufficiency causing central DI or excess leading to the syndrome of inappropriate ADH release (SIADH). DI,which may occur in up to 25% of patients after

pituitary adenoma surgery, is most frequently observed in within the first 48 hours of surgery . It is thought to occur from manipulation, traction, or disruption of the pituitary stalk during tumor removal leading to interruption of ADH release. Patients typically complain of excessive thirst and demonstrate polydipsia with polyuria and dilute urine(urine specific gravity typically 1.005), indicating an inability to concentrate the urine due to ADH deficiency.

Although usually transient, DI may be permanent if there is stalk transection . Fluid intake, urinary output, volume status, as well as serial serum sodium and urine specific gravity or urine osmolality should be assessed to allow prompt recognition of the condition.

One study showed a lower incidence of postoperative DI in patients who were not routinely treated with glucocorticoids . DI can be managed with desmopressin (DDAVP), which is available as a subcutaneous or intravenous (0.52 mcg every 24 hours as needed), intranasal (10 mcg metered dose), or oral formulation (often starting with 0.1-0.2 mg oral as a single dose with doses up to

0.3 mg oral 3 times daily sometimes necessary). Intranasal DDAVP is not generally used until after the nose has healed and nasal congestion has improved. Many patients do not require any therapy as long as they are able to drink to thirst and their serum sodium remains within the normal range.

For others, only 1 or 2 DDAVP doses may be needed as an inpatient before the condition resolves. DI can be transient, permanent, or remit and then recur later postoperatively in a classic triphasic response . In the latter scenario, patients can initially develop DI in the first 24 to 48 hours followed by transient SIADH developing 4 to 10 days

postoperatively, followed by the return of DI in a matter of weeks. When DI returns as the third phase, this disturbance can be permanent. Management depends on the phase, and it is important not to overtreat the first phase of DI, which can result in severe hyponatremia during the potential subsequent SIADH phase.

Fortunately, permanent DI occurs in only approximately 2% of patients following TSS. Between 5 and 9% of patients may also develop isolated SIADH leading to symptomatic and delayed hyponatremia. Therefore, a sodium level is often checked 5

to 8 days postoperatively, typically after the patient has been discharged from the hospital. Mild hyponatremia (i.e., 130-135 mmol/L) may be managed by fluid restriction as an outpatient. severe or symptomatic hyponatremia (typically <125 mmol/L) requires hospitalization for more aggressive management including use of fluid restriction, hypertonic saline or administration of vaptans, competitive

antagonists of vasopressin receptors. In a recent study by Jahangiri et al , postoperative hyponatremia was noted in 19% of subjects. In this study, use of vaptans resulted in more rapid plasma sodium correction versus hypertonic saline. but did lead to overcorrection in 1 subject.

Therefore, selective use of vaptans in the setting of severe hyponatremia may be useful and potentially lead to shorter hospital stays. Journal of Neuroscience Nursing Finally, the clinician should be aware of the critical need to monitor adrenal function and replace glucocorticoids as needed

following pituitary surgery. There are several approaches toward glucocorticoid management in the peri- and postoperative timeframes. ranging from glucocorticoid treatment at surgery with gradual tapering steroid sparing protocols with careful observation 1.Some clinicians choose to empirically

treat all patients perioperatively with glucocorticoids at stress doses (for example, 50-100 mg intravenous hydrocortisone) immediately prior to or during the operation followed by a gradual tapering schedule with reassessment of adrenal function during the early postoperative follow-up as necessary once on lower replacement doses. 2.Another approach is to administer pre- or intraoperative stress dose glucocorticoids only if the preoperative assessment suggests or confirms

adrenal insufficiency. In a steroid-sparing protocol, perioperative steroids would be withheld entirely in a patient with normal preoperative adrenal function. In the days following surgery, early morning cortisol levels are measured and glucocorticoids initiated if the value is consistent with insufficiency. measurement of a basal morning cortisol level is only suggestive of and not diagnostic of adrenal insufficiency.

various cut points have been proposed, below which glucocorticoid replacement should be considered. Proposed cut points for guidance in management are based on studies that suggest a high likelihood of adrenal insufficiency with a morning cortisol less than 4 to 5 mcg/ dL and low likelihood if the level is above 10 to 15 mcg/dL. There is no one best approach, and many factors

need to be considered for an individual patient, but minimizing unnecessary glucocorticoid exposure may be desired. If glucocorticoids are initiated in the perioperative period based on morning cortisol levels dropping below a specified cut point, then physiologic replacement therapy should be maintained until further provocative testing (approximately 6 weeks postoperatively) can be performed to assess longterm replacement needs.

patients should be treated with 100 mg of hydrocortisone beginning at the induction of anesthesia. The dose should be gradually decreased during the next few days. 1. We recommend a replacement dose (eg, 15 to 25mg/ day) following discharge until the initial postoperative evaluation four to six weeks after discharge. 2. Others recommend measuring serum cortisol on the third postoperative day, 24 hours after the previous dose of hydrocortisone, and if the value is low (less than 4mcg/dL [110 nmol/L]) or borderline (5 to 17 mcg/dL [138 to 469 nmol/L]), prescribing

replacement hydrocortisone on discharge. uptodate Journal of Neuroscience Nursing Assessing for Early Remission in Patients with Functional Adenomas For patients with acromegaly, Cushing

disease, and prolactinomas, morning measurement of growth hormone, cortisol and prolactin levels, respectively, on postoperative day one and two have been shown to be moderately predictive of early and long-term remission. For acromegaly, a fasting serum GH level below 2 ng/mL on postoperative day 1 may suggest biochemical remission in patients not preoperatively treated with

somatostatin analogues Within 2 hours of successful resection, metabolic dysfunction and soft tissue swelling start improving, and GH levels are sometimes controlled within an hour. Surgical outcome correlates well with adenoma size and preoperative serum GH levels and particularly with the experience of the Surgeon. . williams

GOALS OF THERAPY : 1. Lower IGF-1 concentration to within the reference range for the patient's age and gender 2. lower the serum GH concentration to <1.0 ng/mL (1.0 mcg/L) as measured by immunoradiometric or chemiluminescent assay .uptodate With normalization of serum IGF-1

concentrations, the life expectancy of patients with acromegaly is similar to that of the general population. characteristic tissue overgrowth and related symptoms gradually recede, and the metabolic abnormalities, such as diabetes mellitus, improve. .uptodate

Even if the serum IGF-1 returns to normal, bony abnormalities generally do not regress and joint symptoms persist. .uptodate Smaller tumors (less than 5 mm) and those totally confined within the sella, and preoperative serum GH levels lower than 40 g/L, portend a favorable g/L, portend a favorable surgical outcome.

About 90% of patients with microadenomas achieve postoperative GH levels lower than 2.5 g/L, portend a favorable g/L, and less than 50% of all-sized macroadenomas had postoperative GH levels lower than 2 g/L, portend a favorable g/L after glucose administration. . williams Patients should be followed quarterly until biochemical control is achieved; thereafter, hormone evaluation is performed

semiannually. In those patients who are biochemically in remission and in whom no residual tumor tissue is present, MRI should be repeated every 1 to 2 years. .williams For prolactinoma patients, a serum prolactin level <10 ng/mL measured on postoperative day 1 has been shown to predict early and

subsequent biochemical remission. Although surgical cure rates for microprolactinomas are high, the rate of hyperprolactinemia recurrence is also relatively high, estimated at about 17% of patients initially considered cured. Most patients with microprolactinomas

experience normalization of PRL levels, and about 50% of patients with macroprolactinoma are in remission after surgery. .williams For Cushing disease, there are a number of protocols used to assess adrenal function in the postoperative period, as it is critical to determine need for repeat surgery if not in remission or begin treatment of adrenal insufficiency.

It is generally recommended that morning serum cortisol levels be measured within the first postoperative week. 1. 2. Protocols for assessment vary and include:

withholding glucocorticoid coverage postoperatively and measuring serial plasma cortisol values to assess for a drop in cortisol levels while the patient remains hospitalized. administering perioperative glucocorticoids (low-dose dexamethasone) and measuring a morning plasma cortisol or urinary free cortisol excretion within the first week. Patients who meet the criterial for successful surgery are hypocortisolemic for up to 12

months after microadenomectomy and require glucocorticoid replacement therapy, which must be supplemented during stress. After successful surgery, glucocorticoid replacement is required until the HPA axis recovers, which in adults occurs about 612 months after resecting ACTH-producing tumors. .JCEM,2015 On the third postoperative day, 1 mg

dexamethasone can be given at 10 PM, and cortisol levels are measured the following morning, prior to initiating hydrocortisone therapy. If the immediate postoperative cortisol level is less than 3 g/L, portend a favorable g/dL, a 95% 5-year remission rate can be expected. .williams glucocorticoid withdrawal : Despite

the use of physiological glucocorticoid replacement, many patients suffer from glucocorticoid withdrawal. Patients should be warned that this is common and expected . Symptoms include anorexia; nausea,weight loss; and other nonspecific symptoms such as fatigue, flu-like, myalgias and arthralgias, lethargy, skin desquamation. .JCEM,2015

Accordingly, patients usually feel worse within a few days or weeks after successful surgery. Adults may experience persistent or newonset atypical depressive disorders, anxiety, or panic symptoms. Recovery from the glucocorticoid withdrawal syndrome may take 1 year or longer. JCEM,2015

The syndrome may persist even after the HPA axis has recovered and may even occur in patients who do not develop secondary adrenal insufficiency after TSS for CD. The pathophysiology of the steroid withdrawal syndrome is not known.

Patients may improve with a temporary increase in the glucocorticoid dose, but it is important to reduce the dose as soon as possible to avoid iatrogenic CS. JCEM,2015 Administering serotonin-specific reuptake inhibitors may help, but this has not been systematically studied. Generally, the most important intervention is frequent support and reassurance by the medical team. Family, friends, and patient

support groups also may be helpful. JCEM,2015 We recommend glucocorticoid replacement with hydrocortisone, 1012 mg/m2/d in divided doses, either twice or thrice daily, with the first dose taken as soon as possible after waking.

Although this dose is somewhat higher than recently reported cortisol production rates , it works well clinically, probably because of interindividual differences in hepatic and adipose metabolism and glucocorticoid receptor polymorphisms. JCEM,2015 Although some practitioners prescribe supraphysiological doses (eg, hydrocortisone

20 mg two to three times daily) in the immediate postoperative period, there are no controlled studies that address whether this (or a slower taper) minimizes the glucocorticoid withdrawal syndrome. Other clinicians use only physiological replacement doses to avoid continued excessive glucocorticoid exposure.

Written instructions about stress dosing for intercurrent illnesses, injectable emergency steroids, and the need to obtain and wear a medical alert tag indicating adrenal insufficiency/glucocorticoid replacement are essential. JCEM,2015 There are a variety of tapering and discontinuation strategies, none of which has been systematically studied; the following are

general comments. 1. Some centers reduce the hydrocortisone dose as weight decreases and discontinue abruptly when the HPA axis is recovered; 2. others taper the dose at fixed intervals. JCEM,2015 Clinicians can assessHPA axis recovery with a morning cortisol level obtained (before that days glucocorticoid

dose) every 3 months, followed by an ACTHstimulation test starting when the level is 7.4g/dL (200 nmol/L) or more. The axis has recovered if the baseline or stimulated level is approximately 18 g/dL (500 nmol/L) or greater. Patients with cortisol levels below 5 g/dL (138nmol/L) should remain on glucocorticoids until retested in 36 months. Stimulation testing may be helpful with intermediate values. JCEM,2015

Any etiology of hypercortisolism can cause preoperative functional central hypothyroidism and central hypogonadism. Although these may resolve after 6 postoperative months. patients may need continued replacement therapy. Clinicians should repeat testing to establish when and if the patient has recovered. JCEM,2015

Following discharge, patients are monitored closely for the next 1 to 2 weeks for reassessment of neurologic status (general neurologic exam, visual acuity and visual fields, cranial nerves) and screened for potential surgical complications such as meningitis or CSF leak. Longer Term Postoperative Management

It is generally recommended that all patients undergo a repeat full evaluation of pituitary function at least 6 weeks after surgery. As in the preoperative evaluation, all anterior pituitary hormonal axes are generally reevaluated to determine pituitary function integrity. Specifically, thyroid, adrenal, gonadal, and GH axes may be assessed at this visit.

Sometimes pituitary hormonal deficiencies will recover postoperatively and will be detected as part of this evaluation . If a patient was treated with glucocorticoids perioperatively, the long-term need for

replacement therapy should be determined at this time. There are a number of methods for assessing adrenal function, including measurement of a morning cortisol as a screen. As discussed above, morning cortisol levels less than 5 mcg/dL are concerning for adrenal insufficiency, and levels greater than 10 to 15 mcg/dL make this diagnosis less likely . Provocative testing of adrenocorticotropic hormonecortisol reserve with cosyntropin stimulation test or an insulin tolerance test

may be performed. The cosyntropin stimulation test is most commonly used due to its ease of administration, but it is recognized that falsely normal results may be observed in patients with hypopituitarism, particularly in the first couple of weeks after an acute event such as pituitary surgery or apoplexy. The insulin tolerance test is not routinely performed

in many centers due to the fact it is labor intensive and requires close monitoring by a physician for the intended effects of hypoglycemia and is contraindicated in elderly patients or those at increased risk for seizures or myocardial ischemia. Replacement therapy is instituted for thyroid and adrenal insufficiency and is considered for gonadal insufficiency at this time( 6 weeks after surgery).

. Although most new hormonal deficiencies will be detected relatively early and by the 6week timeframe, repeat hormonal assessment may be necessary at the 12week postoperative visit to confirm stability of endocrine function. Assessment of GH reserve an consideration for replacement therapy is performed at variable times after surgery. .A postoperative MRI is typically performed at the 12-week visit and serves

as the patients new baseline imaging exam. .Surgical changes interfering with optimal interpretation of the MRI scan usually have resolved by this time. Periodic clinical assessment in the first year following surgery is dictated by the clinical status of the patient and need for titration of hormonal replacement therapy or treatment of any persistent pituitary hormonal hyperfunction.

Generally patients are followed at least on an annual basis for evaluation of pituitary function. Imaging for nonfunctioning pituitary adenomas/sellar masses is repeated annually for 3 to 5 years and thereafter per clinical judgment.

Pituitary imaging for patients with hormonally hyperfunctioning tumors depends on tumor type, biochemical parameters, and overall disease activity. Patients with hyperfunctioning tumors such as acromegaly and Cushing disease also require long-term monitoring of clinical status including biochemical parameters and imaging.

Recurrence of Cushing disease Recurrence is a more significant problem in adults. Clinicians should evaluate patients for possible CD recurrence when the HPA axis recovers, and then annually, or sooner if they have clinical symptoms. Early recovery(within 6 mo) of HPA axis function may indicate an increased risk of recurrence. JCEM,2015 THANKS FOR YOUR


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