Adrenal Disorders

Adrenal glands are the triangular–shaped endocrine glands situated on the top of each kidney. These are also known as the suprarenal glands. Adrenal gland dysfunction may occur due to adrenal gland diseases or diseases of the pituitary glands. During adrenal gland dysfunction, there may be a higher or lower release of hormones.

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  • Cushing's Syndrome Management: It is also known as hypercortisolism. It occurs due to the excessive secretion of cortisol by the adrenal glands. Hypersecretion of cortisol may be due to high levels of stress, alcoholism, malnutrition, panic disorders, depression, a high level of emotional stress, and athlete training. The common symptoms of Cushing syndrome are weight gain, purple stretch marks on the abdomen, arms, thighs, and breasts, fatigue, acne, muscle weakness, easy bruising, delayed healing of skin injuries, and fatty deposits, especially between the upper back and shoulder and on the face. The treatment aims to lower the elevated levels of cortisol in the body.
  • Addison's Disease Management: This condition is also known as adrenal insufficiency. It occurs when the adrenal gland produces significantly lower than normal amounts of cortisol and aldosterone. Patients with this condition experience extreme fatigue, salt cravings, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, low blood sugar, depression, joint and muscle pain, irritability, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and weight loss. The adrenal insufficiency may be due to autoimmune disease, infections, such as tuberculosis, adrenal gland cancer, and adrenal gland bleeding. Reduced production of hormones by the adrenal glands may also be due to reduced secretion of ACTH from the pituitary gland. The treatment includes the administration of oral corticosteroids.
  • Pheochromocytoma Management: Pheochromocytoma is a condition that involves the development of a noncancerous tumor in the adrenal gland. The tumor releases hormones in patients with pheochromocytoma, resulting in headache, high blood pressure, panic attack symptoms, and sweating. The other symptoms include tremors, a rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, and pallor. A few patients also experience blurry vision, constipation, weight loss, and anxiety. Surgery for tumor removal is the primary treatment for pheochromocytoma.