Anterior Gray Matter Pituicytic Heterotopia with Monomorphic Anterior Pituitary Cells: A Variant of Nonsecretory Pituitary Adenoma Neuronal Choristoma? Report of a Rare Case and Review of the Literature

June Guillet, Suash Sharma, Scott E. Forseen, Cargill H. Alleyne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background Mixed tumors of adenomatous and neuronal cells in the sellar region are an uncommon finding. The origins of these heterogeneous tumors are unknown, and management remains unsettled. We report a very rare case of anterior gray matter pituicytic heterotopia with monomorphic anterior pituitary cells that likely represents a variant of nonsecreting pituitary adenoma neuronal choristoma (PANCH) with no ganglion cells. We also review the current literature for the various clinical presentations of PANCH. Case Description A 49-year-old female complaining of headache, blurred vision, and hair loss was found to have a nonsecretory sellar mass with compression of the optic chiasm on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The mass was excised via a transsphenoidal procedure. Histological analysis of tissue sections revealed heterotopic gray matter with reactive gliosis without ganglion cells or Herring bodies. Only 1 smear exhibited characteristics of a pituitary adenoma. Conclusions The overall findings were most consistent with a variant of PANCH. At a postoperative follow-up of 4.5 years, there was resolution of visual symptoms, and the residual sellar mass was stable on MRI. Neuronal choristoma is hypothesized to originate from embryonal pituitary or hypothalamus, or by differentiation from pituitary adenoma cells. Surgery is the cornerstone of management, and the clinical course appears to be similar to that of nonfunctioning pituitary adenoma in reported cases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)759.e1-759.e8
JournalWorld Neurosurgery
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017
Externally publishedYes



  • Adenoma
  • Choristoma
  • Heterotopia
  • Pituitary

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

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