Adrenal Tumors Treated by Cancer Surgeons at Mercy Medical Center

Surgical Oncology at Mercy - Baltimore

The expert cancer surgeons of Surgical Oncology at Mercy in Baltimore are dedicated to treating patients with adrenal tumors. Our doctors are recognized for the skill and caring approach in the surgical treatment of adrenal gland tumors.

About the Condition

Your body has two adrenal glands, one located on the top of each kidney. These small triangular-shaped organs produce several hormones that are essential for the proper control of many body systems and functions such as blood pressure, immune system, blood sugar and body metabolism.

A tumor (neoplasm) is any new and abnormal tissue growth. It can be benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancer). Both types of adrenal tumors produce extra amounts of hormones such as cortisol. Tumors of the adrenal glands are relatively unusual.  Most adrenal tumors are small and benign. Malignant adrenal tumors are rare.

NEXT: Symptoms & Diagnostic Process ›
Symptoms & Diagnostic Process

Adrenal tumors secrete excess amounts of hormones. These hormones can produce a variety of symptoms making diagnosis difficult. Patients with adrenal gland tumors may display some of the following symptoms or signs:  

  • Obesity above the waist
  • Skin changes such as striae or stretch marks ( wide purple marks) on skin of abdomen, thighs
  • Easy bruising
  • Weakness, palpitations,  fatigue
  • Women can have excess body hair and irregular menstruation
  • Men may have decreased sex drive and impotence
  • Increased thirst and urination
  • High blood sugar
  • High blood pressure

Diagnostic testing for Adrenal Tumors may include:

  • PET Scan
  • CT Scan
  • PET/CT Scan
  • MRI
NEXT: Treatment Options ›
Treatment Options

There are many treatment options available for patients with adrenal tumors. Your treatment plan will depend on your age, overall health and the stage of the cancer..

Treatment options may include chemotherapy, radiation therapy or surgery. Surgical removal of an adrenal gland (adrenalectomy) is usually the treatment of choice for adrenal tumors that are causing symptoms due to excess hormone production, or tumors that are malignant. Often this surgery can be performed laparoscopically using minimally invasive techniques.

Advantages you may experience after minimally invasive surgery for adrenalectomy are:

  • Less pain after surgery
  • Shorter hospital stay
  • Faster return to normal activities
  • Less scarring
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