This website is intended for an Australian and New Zealand audience who are interested in acromegaly
This website is intended for an Australian and New Zealand audience who are interested in acromegaly

What healthcare professionals are you likely to see?

You are likely to see several healthcare professionals from the suspicion of acromegaly through to confirmed diagnosis.

The healthcare professionals that may be the first to suspect you have acromegaly may include your:

  • General Practitioner (GP)
  • Nurse
  • Dentist
  • Ophthalmologist

If your GP or other healthcare professional suspects that you have acromegaly, you will normally be referred to an endocrinologist who will perform further tests, confirm the diagnosis and oversee your care long-term.

Intial treatment team

These healthcare professionals may be involved in your treatment:

  • Endocrinologist
  • Endocrine nurse
  • Radiologist
  • Neurosurgeon
  • Radiotherapist

Once you have a confirmed diagnosis of acromegaly, a healthcare team will be involved in your care, with the endocrinologist being your main point of contact.

Other members of your treatment team

Others healthcare professionals who may be part of your healthcare team include those who treat conditions that might occur alongside acromegaly.  These may include:

  • Orthodontist
  • Sleep specialist
  • Rheumatologist
  • Cardiologist
  • Gastroenterologist
  • Headache specialist
  • Pain specialist
  • Foot specialist

From suspicion to a diagnosis

Acromegaly can take a long time to develop and may not show any specific symptoms at the beginning, which may make it difficult for doctors to spot the signs of the condition at an early stage.

Initial symptoms or signs can be similar to other ailments or situations and so they may be initially attributed to other conditions such as depression and anxiety, arthritis or the start of the menopause in women. More distinct symptoms, such as enlargement of the hands and feet, usually occur later in the disease process.

This is why the diagnosis of acromegaly can often take several years and people may see several clinicians, including dentists and ophthalmologists, before an endocrinologist formally diagnoses them.

Do not be afraid to seek out a second medical opinion if you suspect that you, or a loved one, may have acromegaly.

What tests will be used?

To begin the diagnostic process, the endocrinologist will take a medical history and conduct a physical examination. He or she may then recommend the following tests:

Who will give me my treatment?

A number of expert healthcare professionals will be involved in your care and will work together to decide what treatment is best for you. This multidisciplinary approach is the recommended ‘gold standard’ for managing acromegaly and it ensures that you will receive the most appropriate care.

The main healthcare professional that you are likely to see is an endocrinologist who will generally oversee your care.

If surgery is required, you will see a surgeon who specialises in pituitary surgery, usually a neurosurgeon.

If radiotherapy is required then a radiotherapist will also be involved in your treatment.

There may also be a specialist (endocrine) nurse to help and support you in hospital.

If medicines are required to treat your acromegaly an endocrinologist will usually be the one to recommend this treatment. As most medicines used to treat acromegaly are suitable for administration in the community, a GP or practice nurse may also be involved in this part of your treatment.

Acromunity Fast Facts

Who makes the diagnosis?

People can see three or more clinicians before a diagnosis of acromegaly is made.

Endocrinologists are usually the health care professional to formally confirm the acromegaly diagnosis.

How can you keep track of who’s who?

As you are likely to see several healthcare professionals throughout your journey with acromegaly you may find it helpful to keep a log of who you have seen and when you have had an appointment.

You might also find it helpful to note down your medical details and the results of any tests you may have had, your treatments, and any side effects or symptoms you may have had or be experiencing.

See the keeping track of your medical care section of this website where you can download the Acromunity Medical Details and Treatment Tracker to help you share important information about your care with all the members of your healthcare team.

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Diagnosing acromegaly

Find out how acromegaly is diagnosed and the tests that healthcare professionals may use to assess acromegaly symptoms

Diagnosis & Testing

Treating acromegaly

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Acromegaly FAQs

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Ipsen
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 our website for more information about us, or to contact us directly. Website design and development by Kanga Health Ltd. Website reference SOM-AU-000710 Last reviewed 7 July 2020 Ipsen Pty Ltd Level 2, Building 4, Brandon Office Park, 540 Springvale Road, Glen Waverley, VIC 3150 Australia Ipsen Pty Ltd, ABN 47 095 036 909.