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* Not a rare disease
* Not a rare disease
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Pineal cysts are cysts of the pineal gland, a small organ in the brain shaped like the seed of a pine cone that is responsible for making melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep. Pineal cysts may be found by chance in up to 10% of people undergoing CT or MRI brain imaging, and they occur in three times more women than men. Most pineal cysts do not cause symptoms and stay the same size over time (remain stable). In the rare circumstance where a pineal cyst does cause symptoms, it may cause headaches, hydrocephalus, eye movement abnormalities, and Parinaud syndrome. Because most pineal cysts do not grow or cause symptoms, there are no established guidelines for routine follow-up for individuals with pineal cysts. Treatment is usually only considered when a cyst is causing symptoms. In the past, treatment for symptomatic pineal cysts included surgery to remove the cyst (craniotomy); more recently, less invasive procedures such as stereotactic aspiration or endoscopic treatment have been recommended.
- Fakhran S, Escott EJ. Pineocytoma mimicking a pineal cyst on imaging: true diagnostic dilemma or a case of incomplete imaging?. American Journal of Neuroradiology. 2008. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17925371. Accessed December 13, 2011.
- Al-Holou WN, Maher CO, Muraszko KM, Garton HJL. The natural history of pineal cysts in children and young adults. J. Neurosurg. Pediatrics. 2010.
- Gaillard F, Jones J. Masses of the pineal region: clinical presentation and radiographic features. Postgraduate Medical Journal. 2010. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20971711. Accessed December 13, 2011.
- Costa F, Fornari M, Valla P, Servello D. Symptomatic Pineal Cyst: Case Report and Review of the Literature. Minim. Invas. Neurosurg.. 2008.
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- The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) is a federation of more than 130 nonprofit voluntary health organizations serving people with rare disorders. Click on the link to view information on this topic.
- PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Pineal cyst. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.