piturty gland problems???

hi all,recently ive been having strange visual problems,lights in my eyes,vidual snow dislike of bright like all very scary,went to drs they said optical migraines but I was worried sick I have a anxiety disorder I was making myself ill with worry so went for a private mri scan,got the report yesterday and although brain was "normal" the piturity (sorry for spelling) gland had a high signal area,my gp rang up the hospital to explain and was told to send me for some blood tests for hormone levels,i asked if a tumour was seen to be told this type of scan didn't detail the gland much so it wasn't clear and to wait for blood test results and take it from there,as you can imagine am very worried and have googled what high signals mean,you get so many different answers :-( I feel I carnt cope anymore,if lupus isn't bad enough now this,my dr said the visual symptoms would be different if I had a tumour but hey ho the internet community say different,im a mess,i carnt eat or sleep with worry,does this gland have anything to do with lupus,i get scared as my immune system so low,just dnt know what to do or how to cope,it doesn't help that I have no confidence in gps who said I didn't need a scan,any light that anyone could shed on this would be much appreciated xx

6 Replies

Hi poodlegal

I also had the same problem and I am under the supervision of an Endocrinologist and an eye specialist. I had visual problems since 2003 flashing in my eyes, seeing different colours, pain in the eyes and at times no vision and constant headaches. Had the MRI scan, lumbar puncture and blood tests. They found the problem with the pituitary gland and was later diagnosed as having Empty sella syndrome after being told at first that it was intracranial hypertension.Was told this is most likely to do with Lupus and they could not put me on hormone replacement treatment due to some reason to do with my bloods and the medication I am on now. Prednisolone and hydroxychloroquine. I still have problems but have learnt to manage the problem by relaxing and pacing everything I do. I know this does not help much but just hope you will feel better knowing you are not alone in this. I think if they find the problem they will let you know. It took five years for the docs to make a diagnosis. Lupus is unpredictable and has many secondary diseases connected to it. Wish you the best. There is hope!!!! Xxxx


thank you xx


Hi I have had these type of headaches for many years they preceded the Lupus diagnosis. I was worried as i am a glasses wearer so wondered if something was amiss. Not had any tests or anything, to be honest, I have always just rode them out. GP told me that's what they were, and consultant never seemed overly concerned! They are often triggered by a flash of light e.g. sunshine through curtains, trees, etc or stress! i just take a soluable paracetamol and sit in a darkened not dark room. They leave me with a fuzzy thick head and tired so have learnt to just 'roll with it' so to speak. I know when they are starting as I get a 'blind spot' so make sure if that happens I am at home or in a safe place as often I can't see properly. Has happened when driving and have had to pull over and sit it out or get home if not too far away. We have family history of migraines.


I have an arachnoid cyst on my pituitary gland which in anyone else would be operated on but due to all of my problems they are leaving it alone as it is the safest option it is monitored via blood tests as they say it will not grow any more but I also have a list of symptoms to look for in case it does. I also go to the eye clinic once a year so they can do field vision tests.


hi tracy,how did you find out ?if you don't mind me asking did you have symtoms, mri? I think am more worried because its the unknown all this high signal business on the mri report,my gp cant answer if a growth was present as they didn't write it on the report also the wait to see a specialist,it really does help talking to people on here and to know im not alone,thank you all of you xx


Eye-involvement is common in Lupus …

[quote=““] Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic, autoimmune, multisystem disease which may affect the eyes and/or visual system in up to a third of patients. [/quote] rheumatology.oxfordjournals...

Whereas the lifetime risk of a brain tumour is about 1% ...

So Lupus being the cause of your visual symptoms is thirty times more likely than it being due to a brain tumour . An examination of the back of your eye (retina) would have been the place to start, rather than a brain MRI , as some of the disease processes due to Lupus can be visible there , ( e.g. optic-neuritis which can cause photophobia which you've reported) Having a picture taken of your retina is a lot cheaper than a brain MRI.

The optic nerves pass within a centimetre of the pituitary gland ... so inflammation affecting the optic nerves, i.e. optic-neuritis , (causing visual symptoms like photophobia) , could also include the nearby pituitary gland causing it to appear bright ("high signal") on MRI , i.e. the abnormal appearance of the pituitary on the MRI could be due to inflammation rather than cancer.


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