Pheochromocytoma – What It Is, Causes and Treatments That Should Not Be Ignored. In addition, pheochromocytoma is a benign tumor that develops in the adrenal glands located over the kidneys . Although this type of tumor is not life-threatening, it can produce many health problems, especially since the adrenal glands produce hormones that regulate the functioning of almost every organ in the body.
Thus, as hormones are not produced correctly due to the presence of the tumor, the emergence of non-decreasing high blood pressure and other cardiovascular problems is common. Therefore, even though it is not a malignant cancer , in most cases pheochromocytoma should be removed by surgery to prevent damage to other organs over time. So check out Pheochromocytoma – What It Is, Causes and Treatments:
Causes of Pheochromocytoma:
It is not yet known what causes the onset of the disease, but it is believed to be a hereditary problem. What is known is that there are genetic disorders such as neurofibromatosis and von Hippel-Lindau syndrome.
The disease is linked to type 2 multiple endocrine cancer , a neoplasm that affects the adrenal and extra-adrenal glands, and is a genetic disease. Tumors are caused by chromaffin cell hyperplasia of the adrenal medulla or by extra-adrenal chromaffin tissue that has caused chromaffin cell migration to fail during embryo development.
ALSO READ ↓↓:
- Hypokalemia – What It Is, Causes and Treatments
- Anemia – What It Is, Causes, Symptoms and Treatments
- Mastoiditis – What It Is, Causes, Symptoms and Treatments
- Dislocation – What It Is, Causes, Symptoms and Treatments
- Stomach Cancer – What It Is, Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Clinical manifestations of pheochromocytoma usually appear rapidly and disappear slowly. Some people with this disease may not have symptoms, while others may have severe symptoms: palpitations, tachycardia, hypertensive crises, severe headaches, anxiety , tremors, glucose intolerance, etc.
The pheochromocytoma has been associated with other endocrine neoplasms and present characteristic skeletal defects, ganglioneuromatoses and mucosal neuromas. There is also usually weight loss, increased coronary artery tone, symptoms of heart failure and acute myocardial infarction.
The symptomatology of pheochromocytoma in childhood is usually different from that of adults and in them the most common manifestations are: sweating, vision changes , constant high blood pressure and not in the form of seizures, as in adults.
Doctors may not suspect a pheochromocytoma because almost half of people have no symptoms except persistent hypertension . However, when hypertension occurs in a young person, appears and disappears, or accompanies other symptoms of pheochromocytoma , doctors may need some laboratory tests.
For example, the level of some catecholamines or products generated when these catecholamines are broken down can be measured in blood or urine samples.
Due to hypertension and other symptoms, doctors may prescribe a beta blocker before knowing that the cause is a pheochromocytoma . Beta blockers can make hypertension worse in people with pheochromocytoma . This paradoxical reaction often makes clear the diagnosis of pheochromocytoma. If the catecholamine level is high, computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) may help to locate pheochromocytoma .
An examination using injectable radioactive chemicals that tend to accumulate in pheochromocytomas is also helpful. An exam is done to see where the radioactive chemicals are. Genetic tests can be performed, particularly if doctors suspect genetic disease.
Usually the best treatment is to remove pheochromocytoma . Surgery is often delayed, however, until doctors can control catecholamine secretion from the tumor with medications, as having high catecholamine levels can be dangerous during surgery. Phenoxybenzamine is usually given to stop the action of the hormone. Once this step is completed, a beta blocker can be safely used to control symptoms.