Bilateral Partial Adrenalectomy for Bilateral Pheochromocytoma

Nathan G Richards, MD, Frederick J Brody, MD, MBA

George Washington University Medical Center

Bilateral pheochromocytoma is typically treated with surgical resection, most often by bilateral total adrenalectomy. This mandates that patients will be on chronic medication to replace adrenal function. Recently, partial adrenalectomy has been described.

An otherwise healthy 40 year old woman presented with significant hypertension in 2010 while preparing to undergo minor surgery. Medical treatment was initiated, but the patient’s symptoms worsened to include headaches, palpitations, and sweating. Work up included a CT scan of the abdomen that demonstrated bilateral adrenal lesions. Urine metanephrines were consistent with pheochromocytoma and selective adrenal venous sampling demonstrated that both adrenal masses were functioning pheochromocytomas. This video demonstrates that bilateral partial adrenalectomy can successfully be performed and details this patient’s outcome.

Bilateral partial adrenalectomy can safely and effectively be performed for bilateral pheochromocytoma. This has the effect of significantly improving the patient’s quality of life by both alleviating the associated symptoms of pheochromocytoma and by preventing the need for chronic adrenal replacement medications.

Session: Podium Presentation

Program Number: V013

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