Updated: 6/11/2019

Posterior Pituitary

Review Topic

  • Function
    • to secrete oxytocin and vasopressin into systemic circulation
      • recall that the posterior pituitary (or neurohypophysis) have their neuronal cell bodies in the hypothalamus 
  • Anatomy 
    • embryology
      • derived from an evagination of the floor of the forming ventricular system
    • the pituitary gland resides within the sella turcica
      • underneath the sella turcica is the sphenoid sinus allowing
        • a transphenoidal surgical approach to access the pituitary fossa
      • the pituitary fossa is laterally bounded by the cavernous sinus
    • the pituitary gland lies inferiorly to the optic chiasm
      • pituitary tumors compressing the optic chiasm results in a
        • bitemporal hemianopia
  • Clinical correlate 
    • central diabetes insipidus
      • secondary to vasopressin (ADH) deficiency and can result from
        • neurosurgery
        • head trauma
        • malignancy affecting the pituitary-hypothalamic region
    • syndrome of inappropriate ADH
      • secondary to ADH excess and can results from
        • meningitis
        • head trauma
        • pulmonary disorders (e.g., pneumonia and small cell lung cancer)
        • medication side effects (e.g., selective-serotonin reuptake inhibitors, carbamazepine, and cyclophosphamide)
        • ADH-secreting tumors

Please rate topic.

Average 5.0 of 4 Ratings

Thank you for rating! Please vote below and help us build the most advanced adaptive learning platform in medicine

The complexity of this topic is appropriate for?
How important is this topic for board examinations?
How important is this topic for clinical practice?
Topic COMMENTS (2)
Private Note