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Familial Isolated Pituitary Adenoma (FIPA)

Welcome to the FIPA website

This website is intended to increase awareness of Familial Isolated Pituitary Adenoma (FIPA). Pituitary adenomas are tumours that occur in the pituitary gland and affect around one person in every thousand. Pituitary adenomas can affect patients in a variety of ways which are explained in this website.

A small number of patients with pituitary adenomas have family members with similar disease. Current research suggests that about 5% of patients with pituitary adenomas have inherited this condition. Some of these patients belong to FIPA or Familial Isolated Pituitary Adenoma families. Our understanding of FIPA is constantly evolving and we hope that this website will be a valuable resource for FIPA patients, their families and the health care professionals who care for them.

Please use this website to find out more about the pituitary gland, and how FIPA affects it. You will also find useful links to patient support groups, information about the disease, and doctors will find up to date medical research data on FIPA. Please contact us if you have any suggestions to improve the site.

Please see FIPA_AMEND_patient_information_leaflet.pdf [PDF 781KB] for further information regarding FIPA on the Patient Information Leaflet published by the Patient Support Group AMEND.

Charles Byrne - The Irish Giant 

A documentary made about the Irish Giant, Charles Byrne. First, broadcast on the BBC in January 2011 and then on TG4.

Truth in the Folk Tales:
Gigantism in Ireland has a genetic origin

A new study demonstrates that a benign growth on the pituitary gland causing a growth disorder called acromegaly, which in some cases may lead to gigantism, are often inherited in Northern Ireland. A genetic test on DNA samples can identify the presence of the gene presenting the risk.

Read the full story

Featured article in The Endocrinologist

An article on the population screening for AIP mutations in Northern Ireland was featured in the summer 2013 issue of "The Endocrinologist".

Legends_and_Facts_Population_Screening_for_AIP_Mutations_in_Northern_Ireland.pdf [PDF 241KB] 

A Tall Story: Unravelling The Genetics Behind Charles Byrne

On the 23rd November 2011 Prof Korbonits gave a lecture at the Royal College of Surgeons in London. She addressed members of the public including many patients about "A Tall Story: unravelling the genetics behind Charles Byrne 'the Irish Giant'". Mr Holland, a patient who has the same common ancestor as the 'the Irish Giant' and also suffers from the same disease, also gave a personal account of the disease. 


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