The signs and symptoms of carcinoid syndrome depend on which chemicals your carcinoid tumor secretes into your bloodstream. The most common signs and symptoms of carcinoid syndrome include:
- Skin flushing. The skin on your face and upper chest feels hot and changes color — ranging from pink to red to purple. Flushing episodes may last from a few minutes to a few hours or longer. Flushing may happen for no obvious reason, though sometimes it can be triggered by stress, exercise or drinking alcohol.
- Facial skin lesions. Purplish areas of spider-like veins may appear on the nose and upper lip.
- Diarrhea. Frequent, watery stools sometimes accompanied by abdominal cramps may occur in people who have carcinoid syndrome.
- Difficulty breathing. Asthma-like signs and symptoms, such as wheezing and shortness of breath, may occur at the same time you experience skin flushing.
- Rapid heartbeat. Periods of fast heart rate could be a sign of carcinoid syndrome.
When to see a doctor
Make an appointment with your doctor if you have signs and symptoms that concern you.