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Cat Pituitary Tumors

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Cat Pituitary Tumors


The pituitary gland is on the underside of the cat’s brain. It is attached to a very important part of the brain called the hypothalamus. This area is a collecting center that will gather the information from the cat’s body and determine if the body is in good working order. When this information is received, and when there is something within the cat’s body that needs tending to, it will secrete one of the hormones that the pituitary gland produces.

Although most Cat Tumors of the pituitary glands are benign or non-cancerous cysts, they still will have many negative effects on the cat’s body and are seldom curable. The pituitary gland gathers the information and transmits that information to other glands and to the adrenal cortex. This will lead to over stimulation of the glands produced by the reaction to the tumors.

Is There a Predisposition in Some Breeds?

Cysts that are in and around the pituitary gland are very common in some cat breeds. There is one type that causes Cat Difficulty Breathing in some short nosed cats. Another effects the growth hormone. There are also cat breeds that have genetic predisposition to cancers and some cats that have more incidences of pituitary tumors than other breeds. This causes hyperactivity in the adrenal cortex.

What Can I expect if my Pet has Pituitary Tumors?

Due to the excessive pressure caused by the growth of the tumor, there will be several clinical signs. The areas around the pituitary are responsible for sight and may also cause Cat Diabetes insipidus. Diabetes insipidus is a pituitary issue rather than a pancreatic issue as is the case for diabetes mellitus. There will be Cat Increased Thirst and Cat Increased Urination. The blood sugar will be low and your pet will have difficulty with their libido and their sexual performance with insipidus.

ACTH is the most common hormone that is produced by the pituitary gland. It will cause increased activity and size of the adrenal cortex and hormones.

Signs and Symptoms

• Increased Appetite

Cat Increased Thirst

• Loss of hair

• Dry skin

• Blackheads on their belly

• Hard masses in the neck area and back with ulcers and pus

• Weakening of muscle to the extent of abdominal sagging

• Infections are difficult to treat due to the compromising of the immune system

What will my vet do?

With the use of x-rays, ultrasounds and MRI or CT tumors and potentially metastasized areas can be identified. Your vet will perform blood tests that will determine the efficiency of the pituitary and the adrenal cortex. A positive identification through biopsy is impractical and rarely performed due to the location of the pituitary gland.

Treatment Options

At best, treatment is rarely successful. Surgical removal is rare. The adrenal glands may be removed but usually the tumors are treated medically. It will be a very long-term process that requires constant monitoring of your cat.


The prognosis is poor. The normal life expectancy of a cat with medically treated tumors is several days to 10 years, with 3 years being the average. Constant observation can prolong the life of your cat, but there can still be relapses. Most deaths result from problems stemming from the original disease.

Suggested Products

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Additional Cat Cancer Pages

Cat Cancer | Cat Skin Cancer | Cat Lung Cancer | Cat Pancreatic Cancer | Cat Cancer Prevention | Cat Cancer Diagnosis | Cat Gastric Cancer | Cat Lymphoma Cancer | Cat Squamous Cell Carcinoma | Cat Mouth Cancer | Cat Brain Tumor | Cat Palliative Cancer Care

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