An adrenal adenoma is a noncancerous growth that occurs in the adrenal glands. Most of them don’t even produce any symptoms, but others may interfere with the body’s hormonal balance, forcing the glands to produce more hormones, like cortisol.
Adrenal Adenoma Symptoms
As mentioned above, some of these tumors produce no symptoms. However, functioning adrenal adenomas can force the adrenal glands to produce excess hormones (mostly aldosterone or cortisol).
In these cases, the symptoms of the tumor may be the following:
- Muscles weakness, occasional numbness
- High blood sugar
- Low levels of potassium
- High blood pressure
- Abdominal stretch marks
- Weight gain in the upper body
- Mood changes
Adrenal Adenoma Treatment
Treatment options will mostly depend on whether the tumor is interfering with hormone production. Small, nonfunctional tumors may only require periodic monitoring. If the tumor grows rapidly, it may get removed with surgery.
Functioning tumors are usually treated in the following ways:
- Adrenal gland removal or adrenalectomy, either with the help of laparoscopy or with a more invasive approach when the tumor is larger and possibly malignant. Sometimes, the remaining adrenal gland may be sufficient for normal hormone production, but if not, hormone therapy is needed.
Medication: if surgery isn’t an option, patients will receive medication therapy the normalize hormone levels.