Doctor insights on:
Life After Adrenal Gland Removal
Ask the surgeon:
I don't know why the adrenal is being removed. Hopefully you were evaluated by an endocrinologist to see if an adrenal nodule was causing symptoms of an excess hormone.
Otherwise nodules less than 3-4 cm can be watched. If there is a suspicion of hormone release or cancer the surgery can often be done percutaneously without using the old "open" chevron procedure. Read more
If only one removed: No systemic consequences.Get a more detailed answer ›
No easy answer: It depends on what you mean by "bad". If you have adrenal insufficiency, then both glands have to be bad and you need an ACTH stim test. If there is a mass, then a CT or MRI can evaluate it. If one gland is overproducing a hormone, then you may need a complicated procedure to draw blood from the veins that drain each gland. See your endocrinologist. Read more
Adrenal function: Typically, when there are two organs and one is removed, the other compensates and under normal, non-stressed situations, the person should do find. However, since the adrenal gland is a "life saving" - "fight or flight" gland, one gland when over stressed may lead to adrenal hypofuction, with symptoms similar to addison's disease. So remember to minimize your stress and excercise relaxation. Read more
It depends: If you have been told that you have an "overactive adrenal gland, " you must make sure you see an endocrinologist. The adrenal gland produces many different hormones, so calling it "overactive" is not clear about which of these hormones might be elevated. Some possibilities include cushings (high cortisol), pheochromocytoma (high catecholamines), and hyperaldosteronism (high aldosterone). Read more
Primary and metastat: Functional adrenal tumors of the cental cortex region cause Cushings disease. In the cortex one finds the pheochromocytoma which can be benign or malignant and produce hormonal activity elevating blood pressure. Metastatic lesions are also found with the primary in kidney or lung. In most cases, except for small benign adenoma, surgery indicated. Read more
3 types: The adrenal gland is a double structured gland with a central medullary portion which when a tumor develops produces adrenaline like products elevating BP. The cortical tumors produce cortisone and when functional present with Cushngs syndrome. The 3rd lesion is metastatic to adrenal from primaries of kidney and lung and sometimes melanoma. Read more
What disorder do you have - too much adrenal hormone or too little? Surely you have seen a doctor about this.
If not, please do so.
Also go on-line and find some articles on adrenal gland disorders - there are many articles that are easy to read and understand. You could also go to your Public Library and look at some books about hormones. Read more
Maybe nothing: This could be an incidental finding on a ct. Has something has happened to the adrenal? Infiltration/inflammation from tuberculosis, autoimmune? Adrenal hemorrhage (from previous severe illness)? Calcium disorder (eg parathyroid) causing calcification all over? Adrenal testing will tell you if they are functioning, and a careful review of the scan for a mass is needed. Read more
Hi. 2 big issues: 1) is it benign or malignant, and 2) is it overproducing a hormone or not? My advice is to see an endocrinologist comfortable with diagnosing adrenal tumors. It's a complex field, and I'm too far away to do it for you! ;-)
Hormone tumors could be Cushing's, aldosteronoma, or pheochromocytoma. The work up will include CT scan attenuation.
Don't ignore it or put it off. Good luck Read more
Multifunctional: Very briefly, the adrenal gland can be divided between the cortex and medulla. The cortex makes a variety of hormones which control salt balance, cortisol, and androgens. The medulla primarily secretes norepinephrine and epinephrine. Functions of medulla and cortex are completely different as are the way their hormones are made and how they work. Read more
Many: Among them, maintaining bone health, lipido, cholesterol metabolism and other body functions. Read more
Adrenal enlargement: It is very common to pick up an adrenal nodule, or enlargement, when a scan is done for other reasons. Usually these are benign "incidenal-omas". There is concern if they are large, or if there is evidence that they are oversecreting hormones. See your doctor for advice on how to proceed. Read more
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