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What are the goals of treating acromegaly?

Since acromegaly affects everyone differently, treatment strategies need to be individualized.

One of the main goals of treatment is to achieve biochemical control – the normalization of growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) levels in the blood. Usually the first treatment is to remove the pituitary tumour, or to at least reduce its size with surgery but sometimes additional treatments, such as medication or radiotherapy, may have to be used.

Everyone has a different journey with acromegaly. The treatments you receive may need to change with time to achieve your individual treatment goals.

Living with acromegaly

Information about the emotional, physical and social challenges of living with acromegaly



Reducing or debulking the tumour

One of the first things your doctor will consider in acromegaly treatment is surgery to completely remove or reduce the size of the pituitary tumour.

Although it may not always be possible to completely remove the tumour, because of its size or shape, smaller tumours are often removable.

Removing or debulking the tumour should normalize, or at least reduce, the levels of excessive growth hormone in the body.

If complete surgical removal is not possible, or if people cannot undergo an operation or decline to have surgery for whatever reason, medications can be used.

Hormone levels and symptoms

The main goal of acromegaly treatment is to reduce abnormally high levels of growth hormone and IGF-1 levels to normal (this is known as biochemical control).

Reducing GH levels may help relieve some symptoms of acromegaly.

Reduction of GH level may also be associated with reductions in swelling and joint pain.

Maintaining normal pituitary function

Your doctor will assess you to ensure that the pituitary gland is able to continue to function as normally as possible after surgery.

The pituitary plays an important role in the body, aside from controlling growth and development, as it produces hormones that affect the normal functioning of the other endocrine glands, such as the thyroid gland, the adrenal glands and sex glands (testicles and ovaries).

Side effects

Please note that all treatments may have side effects. They vary depending on the treatment and how your body reacts to it. Always ask your doctor about side effects when considering a given treatment.

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Treating acromegaly

Read about acromegaly treatment options, including surgery, radiotherapy and medications and the goals of treatment.

Find out more about acromegaly

Acromegaly FAQs

Read answers to some common questions that patients with acromegaly have asked

Support groups

Find an acromegaly patient support group in your country to learn about local activities and events that you may be able to attend.

Living with acromegaly

Information about the emotional, physical and social challenges of living with acromegaly

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Please always consult a healthcare professional if you require healthcare advice or if you have any specific concerns regarding your acromegaly, its treatment or side effects. The information provided here is not intended to replace professional advice. This website has been developed by Ipsen in collaboration with those living with acromegaly and the healthcare professionals who care for them. Ipsen would like to thank everyone for their valuable insights and stories. All names used on this website are not necessarily real names. Visit www.ipsen.ca for more information about us.


Consultez toujours un professionnel de la santé lorsque vous avez besoin de conseils en matière de soins de santé ou lorsque vous avez des préoccupations particulières concernant l’acromégalie, sa prise en charge ou ses effets secondaires. Les renseignements fournis ici ne doivent pas remplacer les conseils offerts par un professionnel. Ce site Web a été conçu par Ipsen en collaboration avec des personnes atteintes d’acromégalie et de professionnels de la santé qui s’occupent d’elles. Ipsen tient à remercier toutes les personnes qui ont participé à l’élaboration de ce site Web pour de leurs précieux commentaires et leurs témoignages. Les noms utilisés sur ce site Web peuvent être fictifs. Pour en savoir plus à notre sujet, consultez le site www.ipsen.ca

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