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Pituitary tumour apoplexy due to pituitary adenoma in a dog: clinical, 3T MRI and CT features
  1. Chiara Briola1,2,
  2. Greta Galli3,
  3. Marika Menchetti3,
  4. Marco Caldin4 and
  5. Giovanna Bertolini1
  1. 1Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology Division, San Marco Veterinary Clinic and Laboratory, Veggiano (Padova), Italy
  2. 2Veterinary Radiology Department, Cambridge Veterinary University, Cambridge, UK
  3. 3Neurology and Neurosurgery Division, San Marco Veterinary Clinic and Laboratory, Veggiano (Padova), Italy
  4. 4Clinical Pathology Division, San Marco Veterinary Clinic and Laboratory, Veggiano (Padova), Italy
  1. Correspondence to Dr Chiara Briola; cb941{at}


Pituitary apoplexy (PA) is a neurological syndrome resulting from sudden infarction/haemorrhage within a normal or tumoural pituitary gland. Prompt imaging is essential to correlate haemorrhagic/ischaemic changes with clinical signs. The purpose of this report is to describe the clinical, CT and 3T MRI findings of PA in a 13-year-old dog previously diagnosed with pituitary-dependent hyperadrenocorticism. Neurological examination revealed an anxious-compulsive behaviour, internal ophthalmoplegia and bilaterally reduced menace response. Brain MRI showed a pituitary mass with two focal well-defined areas. The first was T2 weighted (T2w) and T1 weighted (T1w) hyperintense, FLAIR hypointense to the grey matter, and mildly contrast-enhancing with signal void artefact in GE-T2*, compatible with late/subacute haemorrhage; the second was T2w hypointense, T1w, FLAIR and GE-T2* isointense/hypointense to the grey matter and moderately enhancing, compatible with acute haemorrhage. The dog recovered after 24 hours, but internal ophthalmoplegia remained. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first report describing MRI findings in a dog with PA.

  • 3T magnetic resonance imaging
  • diffusion weighted magnetic resonance imaging
  • dogs
  • pituitary apoplexy
  • computed tomography (CT)
  • pituitary
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  • Contributors The authors have contributed equally to this report.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement All data relevant to the study are included in the article.

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