Grandmother’s life transformed after pituitary surgery

Grandmother’s life transformed after pituitary surgery

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Margaret Kerbo has always been an obese adult. She was tired all the time and slept for less than four hours a night. She says, “I went to a heart doctor, a kidney doctor and my primary care doctor.” But no one could diagnose her signs and symptoms correctly. She adds, “It’s not like I hadn’t been seen by doctors over the years, but nobody could figure out what was going on. Then once I got diagnosed with diabetes, the answer to everything became, ‘Well, you have diabetes.’” Eventually she was taking 10 different medications at once.

Luckily, her daughter found some information and suggested she look into Cushing’s disease. Margaret realized she had many symptoms of the disease. A former teacher, she did her research online and visited an endocrinologist. The test results were inconsistent, but an MRI scan of her brain later showed that she had a noncancerous pituitary tumor.

Further investigation for treatment led her to the Barrow Pituitary Center, where she scheduled an appointment with Dr. Andrew Little, one of the Center’s co-directors. He performed a few additional tests and offered her surgery to remove the tumor.

Margaret shares, “It was the easiest surgery I’ve ever had in my life. They went up my nose to remove the tumor, and two hours later I was awake and talking on the phone.” Two days later, she was released from the hospital with her only discomfort being nasal congestion.

Within two months after the surgery, Margaret lost more than 50 pounds and has significantly reduced her medication intake.

“I am so pleased that Margaret finally has relief from Cushing’s disease,” Dr. Little said. “She has been struggling with this problem for a long time. Now she can get back into life.”

For Margaret, this means spending more quality time with her husband of 41 years, eight children and six grandchildren. Specialists at the Barrow Pituitary Center help patients like Margaret find the root of their symptoms and give them treatments so they can live life to the fullest again.

Research to decode the mysteries of the “master gland”

Known as the “master gland” of the body, the pituitary gland produces many hormones that regulate bodily functions. Experts at the Barrow Pituitary Center understand that pituitary disorders are difficult to diagnose because many signs and symptoms mask the problem. That’s why they are conducting research to understand how pituitary diseases develop and find biomarkers that can track their progression. They are also bringing clinical trials to patients who can immediately benefit from innovative therapies. Please donate to support Barrow doctors and researchers to help patients like Margaret, relieve their symptoms and return to a healthy life.