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    Pheochromocytoma

    Important
    It is possible that the main title of the report Pheochromocytoma is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.

    Synonyms

    • chromaffin cell tumor
    • adrenal paraganglioma
    • paraganglioma

    Disorder Subdivisions

    • None

    General Discussion

    Pheochromocytoma is a rare type of tumor that arises from certain cells known as chromaffin cells, which produce hormones necessary for the body to function properly. Most pheochromocytomas originate in one of the two adrenal glands located above the kidneys in the back of the upper abdomen. Most chromaffin cells are found in the adrenal gland's inner layer, which is known as the adrenal medulla. Approximately 90 percent of pheochromocytomas occur in the adrenal medulla. Approximately 10 percent occur outside of this area. These cases are referred to as extra-adrenal pheochromocytomas or paragangliomas. Paragangliomas may be found in the chest, heart, bladder, and/or neck or base of the skull. Symptoms associated with pheochromocytomas include high blood pressure (hypertension), headaches, excessive sweating, and/or heart palpitations. In most cases, pheochromocytomas occur randomly, for unknown reasons (sporadically). In approximately 25 to 35 percent of cases, pheochromocytomas may be inherited as an autosomal dominant trait. Some inherited cases may occur as part of a larger disorder such as multiple endocrine neoplasia types 2a and 2b, von Hippel-Lindau syndrome, neurofibromatosis or familial paraganglioma syndromes types 1, 3 or 4, or as familial isolated pheochromocytoma.

    Resources

    National Adrenal Diseases Foundation
    505 Northern Bloulevard
    Great Neck, NY 11021
    USA
    Tel: (516)487-4992
    Fax: (516)829-5710
    Email: nadfmail@nadf.us
    Internet: http://www.nadf.us/

    March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation
    1275 Mamaroneck Avenue
    White Plains, NY 10605
    Tel: (914)997-4488
    Fax: (914)997-4763
    Tel: (888)663-4637
    Email: Askus@marchofdimes.com
    Internet: http://www.marchofdimes.com

    American Cancer Society, Inc.
    250 Williams NW St
    Ste 6000
    Atlanta, GA 30303
    USA
    Tel: (404)320-3333
    Tel: (800)227-2345
    TDD: (866)228-4327
    Internet: http://www.cancer.org

    National Cancer Institute
    6116 Executive Blvd Suite 300
    Bethesda, MD 20892-8322
    USA
    Tel: (301)435-3848
    Tel: (800)422-6237
    TDD: (800)332-8615
    Email: cancergovstaff@mail.nih.gov
    Internet: http://www.cancer.gov

    National Dysautonomia Research Foundation
    PO Box 301
    Red Wing, MN 55066-0102
    Tel: (651)327-0367
    Email: ndrf@ndrf.org
    Internet: http://www.ndrf.org

    Rare Cancer Alliance
    1649 North Pacana Way
    Green Valley, AZ 85614
    USA
    Internet: http://www.rare-cancer.org

    Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
    PO Box 8126
    Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
    Tel: (301)251-4925
    Fax: (301)251-4911
    Tel: (888)205-2311
    TDD: (888)205-3223
    Internet: http://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/GARD/

    Madisons Foundation
    PO Box 241956
    Los Angeles, CA 90024
    Tel: (310)264-0826
    Fax: (310)264-4766
    Email: getinfo@madisonsfoundation.org
    Internet: http://www.madisonsfoundation.org

    Caring for Carcinoid Foundation
    198 Tremont Street
    P.O. Box 456
    Boston, MA 02116
    Tel: (617)948-2514
    Fax: (617)948-2501
    Email: info@caringforcarcinoid.org
    Internet: http://www.caringforcarcinoid.org

    Friends of Cancer Research
    1800 M Street NW
    Suite 1050 South
    Washington, DC 22202
    Tel: (202)944-6700
    Email: info@focr.org
    Internet: http://www.focr.org

    Cancer Support Community
    1050 17th St NW Suite 500
    Washington, DC 20036
    Tel: (202)659-9709
    Fax: (202)974-7999
    Tel: (888)793-9355
    Internet: http://www.cancersupportcommunity.org/

    Association for Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Disorders (AMEND)
    The Warehouse
    No. 1 Draper Street
    Royal Tunbridge Wells
    Kent, TN4 0PG
    United Kingdom
    Tel: 00441892516076
    Fax: 00441892516076
    Email: jo.grey@amend.org.uk
    Internet: http://www.amend.org.uk

    Pheo Para Troopers
    P.O. Box 2064
    Kokomo, IN 46904
    Email: info@pheoparatroopers.org
    Internet: http://www.pheoparatroopers.org

    Hageman Foundation
    1027 Hampshire Drive
    Maryville, TN 37801
    Tel: (865)238-5842
    Fax: (865)238-5844
    Tel: (866)612-8579
    Email: Info@HagemanFoundation.org
    Internet: http://www.HagemanFoundation.org

    For a Complete Report:

    This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be downloaded free from the NORD website for registered users. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational therapies (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, go to www.rarediseases.org and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

    The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only. NORD recommends that affected individuals seek the advice or counsel of their own personal physicians.

    It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report

    This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

    For additional information and assistance about rare disorders, please contact the National Organization for Rare Disorders at P.O. Box 1968, Danbury, CT 06813-1968; phone (203) 744-0100; web site www.rarediseases.org or email orphan@rarediseases.org

    Last Updated: 10/25/2011
    Copyright 1988, 1989, 1996, 1997, 2004, 2011 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

    WebMD Medical Reference from the National Organization for Rare Disorders

    Last Updated: May 28, 2015
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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