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Pheochromocytoma

National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

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.

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