IMPORTANT NOTICE: At Fortis Healthcare, we are fully supportive of the National priorities set out by the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India. Further to the directives of the Government provided in their press release dated 8th Nov 2016, payments at Government hospitals can be made through 500 and 1000 Rupee denomination notes. In view of the hardship being caused to the large number of patients at private hospitals, we have made an urgent representation to the Government that this exemption should apply equally, for payments, at private hospitals. We are following up with the authorities and hope the Government will step in quickly to resolve this anomaly. Meanwhile, at Fortis hospitals across the country, we continue to accept payments through credit card, debit card and electronic banking transfers. As 500 and 1000 Rupee denomination notes are no longer legal tender we are only accepting 100 Rs and lower currency notes. As per Government regulation, a PAN card and legitimate ID proof is however required for payments in cash exceeding Rs 50,000. Meanwhile we continue to ensure that emergency cases get immediate medical attention without delay whatsoever and have put in more administrative staff and help desks to assist patients.

Pheochromocytoma

A pheochromocytoma (fee-o-kroe-moe-sy-TOE-muh) is a rare, usually noncancerous (benign) tumor that develops in cells in the center of an adrenal gland. You have two adrenal glands, one above each kidney. Your adrenal glands produce hormones that give instructions to virtually every organ and tissue in your body.

If you have a pheochromocytoma, an adrenal gland releases hormones that cause persistent or episodic high blood pressure. If left untreated, a pheochromocytoma can result in severe or life-threatening damage to other body systems, especially the cardiovascular system.

Most people with a pheochromocytoma are between the ages of 20 and 50, but the tumor can develop at any age. Surgical treatment to remove a pheochromocytoma usually returns blood pressure to normal.


Symptoms Causes Risk factors Complications

Signs and symptoms of pheochromocytomas often include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Rapid or forceful heartbeat
  • Profound sweating
  • Severe headache
  • Tremors
  • Paleness in the face
  • Shortness of breath

Less common signs or symptoms may include:

  • Anxiety or sense of doom
  • Abdominal pain
  • Constipation
  • Weight loss

These signs and symptoms often occur in brief spells of 15 to 20 minutes. Spells can happen several times a day or less often. Your blood pressure may be within the normal range or remain elevated between spells.

Triggers of symptomatic spells

Spells may occur spontaneously or may be triggered by such factors as:

  • Physical exertion
  • Anxiety or stress
  • Changes in body position
  • Bowel movement
  • Labor and delivery

Foods high in tyramine, a substance that affects blood pressure, also can trigger a spell. Tyramine is common in foods that are fermented, aged, pickled, cured, overripe or spoiled. These foods may include:

  • Some cheeses
  • Some beers and wines
  • Dried or smoked meats
  • Avocados, bananas and fava beans
  • Pickled fish
  • Sauerkraut or kimchi

Certain medications that can trigger a symptomatic spell include:

  • Decongestants
  • Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), such as phenelzine (Nardil), tranylcypromine (Parnate) and isocarboxazid (Marplan)
  • Stimulants, such as amphetamines or cocaine

When to see a doctor

The signs and symptoms of pheochromocytoma can be caused by a number of different conditions. Therefore, it's important to get a prompt diagnosis.

Although high blood pressure is a primary sign of a pheochromocytoma, most people with high blood pressure don't have an adrenal tumor. Talk to your doctor if any of the following factors are relevant to you:

  • Difficulty controlling high blood pressure with current treatment plan
  • A family history of pheochromocytoma
  • A family history of a related genetic disorder: multiple endocrine neoplasia, type II (MEN II); von Hippel-Lindau disease; familial paraganglioma or neurofibromatosis 1 (NF1)

© 1998-2015 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER). All rights reserved. Terms of use