Adrenal

All
  • All
  • Adrenal FAQ
  • Adrenal Incidentaloma
  • Adrenal Surgery
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma
  • Cushing Syndrome
  • Metastases to the Adrenal
  • Paraganglioma
  • Pheochromocytoma
  • Primary Aldosteronism
  • Sex Hormone Producing Tumors
Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Treatment of Primary Aldosteronism

The best treatment for primary hyperaldosteronism depends on the cause of the disease and the individual patient. Patients found to have evidence of excess aldosterone production from one gland (unilateral) are usually provided with several options for treatment. Most commonly, surgery (adrenalectomy of the affected side) is recommended. The operation is usually performed using minimally…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Treatment of Metastatic Disease to the Adrenal Gland

There are a number of strategies used to treat metastatic disease that has traveled to the adrenal gland. There are several principles that are followed when considering how to treat these types of tumor: Treat the underlying cancer First and most important is to treat the primary tumor (where the tumor originates from). For many…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Treatment of Cushing Syndrome

Treatment It is very important that patients with Cushing’s syndrome receive treatment for their disease process. Ideally, the tumor causing excess ACTH or cortisol is removed. In many cases, this is possible, but in some cases it is not. Each patient’s case is unique and the treatment plan is individually tailored for each person.  Surgical…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Recovery After Adrenal Surgery

A number of options are available for controlling pain after surgery. Patients who have had laparoscopic surgery are expected to have less pain post-operatively than those who have undergone open adrenalectomy and can usually their pain with non-narcotic pain medications (such as acetaminophen [Tylenol] and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication [ibuprofen]). For breakthrough pain, narcotic pain medications (hydorcodone,…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Potential Complications After Adrenal Surgery

GeneralOverall, complications rates are significantly higher in open surgery compared to laparoscopic procedures. In open surgery, lung problems are the most common complications occurring in approximately 6% of patients. These include pneumonia and atelectasis (collapse of the spaces in the lungs that transfer oxygen to the blood). Wound infection occurs in approximately 3%. The risk…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Pheochromocytoma: Diagnosis and Treatment

Adrenaline, noradrenaline (also known as epinephrine and norepinephrine) and dopamine (all three being types of catecholamines) are hormones that influence many normal functions of the body. Most notably, they regulate heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, digestion, sweating, urination, and sexual arousal. In times of stress or danger, catecholamines increase blood sugar to supply the brain…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Paraganglioma: Diagnosis and Treatment

Background Noradrenaline and adrenaline are hormones that influence many normal functions of the body. They help regulate heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, digestion, sweating, urination, and sexual arousal. In times of stress or danger, they also increase blood sugar to supply the brain and muscle with energy. Adrenaline is said to control the “fight or…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Metastatic Disease to the Adrenal: Signs and Symptoms

Nearly all patients who develop an adrenal metastasis will have a history of a prior cancer, usually one of the common cancers listed above that has a tendency to spread to the adrenal gland. It is very rare for metastatic cancer to show up first in the adrenal gland all by itself without prior warning.…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Metastastic Disease to the Adrenal

Occasionally a cancer from another part of the body will metastasize (spread) to one or even both of the adrenal glands. Among the common cancers that will sometimes spread in this way are renal cell carcinoma (kidney cancer), melanoma (a type of skin cancer), lung cancer, colorectal cancer, breast cancer and lymphoma (lymph node cancer).…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Hypercortisolism Diagnosis and Imaging

Diagnosis and Radiological tests There are four main questions your doctor will try to answer to determine if you might have Cushing syndrome: Once the diagnosis is made, the next step is to determine the cause. If the ACTH level is high, you will need to have additional tests to determine if there is a…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Evaluation of Primary Aldosteronism

What is primary hyperaldosteronism? Aldosterone is a hormone made by the adrenal gland that primarily helps control blood pressure. When blood pressure is low, aldosterone tells the kidneys to hold onto sodium and water and get rid of potassium. Too much aldosterone increases the amount of fluid in the body (raising your blood pressure) and…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Background and Signs and Symptoms

What is Cushing’s syndrome? Cortisol is a steroid hormone made by the adrenal glands. Normal levels of cortisol are necessary to sustain life, maintain normal sleep-wake cycles, and allow the body to respond to stressful events. Although limited bursts of cortisol are normal, long-term elevations can be harmful. People with too much cortisol in their…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Adrenal Vein Sampling

What is Adrenal Vein Sampling and how is it performed? Some patients diagnosed with primary aldosteronism who are considering surgery for treatment may be referred for adrenal vein sampling. This procedure is performed by an interventional radiologist. With sedation and local anesthetic, catheters are introduced into one or both femoral veins in the upper thigh.…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Adrenal Tumor Diagnosis and Treatment

What is a sex-hormone producing adrenal tumor? Sex-hormone producing adrenal tumors are very rare and occur in about 2 out of every 1 million people. These tumors may be benign or cancerous. Telling the difference between a benign and a cancerous sex-hormone producing tumor may be difficult. The best predictor of cancer is whether or…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Adrenal Surgery

Overview Prior to having adrenal surgery, your doctor will ensure that you have been properly prepared. You should discuss all of your medical problems with your surgeon during your consultation visit. Specific blood work, additional tests or consultation with physicians in a number of specialties may be required depending on your medical problems. In addition,…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Adrenal Incidentaloma

Improvements in X-ray techniques have led to the discovery of an increasing number of clinically silent adrenal masses called adrenal incidentalomas. An adrenal incidentaloma is an asymptomatic adrenal tumor that is discovered on an imaging test (CAT scan, MRI, etc) which was ordered to evaluate a problem that is unrelated to adrenal disease. This definition does…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Adrenal Frequently Asked Questions

What is the adrenal gland? The adrenal glands are two small glands that are several centimeters in length (about the size of your thumb), which sit above each kidney in the back of the abdomen. The adrenal glands are responsible for making hormones that control blood pressure and respond to physical stress (fight or flight…

Illustration of Adrenal Glands

Adrenal Cortical Cancer

Background Adrenocortical cancer (ACC) is a very rare, but very deadly cancer of the adrenal glands. It arises from the outer layer of the adrenal gland called the cortex. There are only about 600 new cases diagnosed every year (about 1 case in one million people). It is most common either before the age of…