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Understanding Acromegaly

What is acromegaly?

Acromegaly is a chronic disease, usually caused by a benign (not cancerous) tumor on the pituitary gland. The high levels of growth hormone (GH) caused by the tumor lead to too much of a protein called insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I). This causes abnormal growth of tissues and organs.

Hear from other patients with acromegaly

A pituitary tumor is the cause of most acromegaly cases

For most people with acromegaly, treatment starts with surgery to remove the tumor. If surgery is not possible or not effective, radiation can be used to shrink the tumor.

Why IGF-I levels matter in acromegaly

After surgery or radiation, patients’ levels of GH may return to normal, but there are some patients who may still make too much GH. This can lead to making too much IGF-I. When IGF-I levels are too high after surgery or radiation, patients may still be at risk for symptoms of acromegaly.