Diagnosis at Mayo Clinic

By Mayo Clinic Staff


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Your Mayo Clinic specialist will start by taking your medical history and performing a physical exam. You are likely to have blood and urine tests, including hormone-level tests. Adrenal cancer is often associated with excessive production of one of several hormones, including cortisol (Cushing syndrome), aldosterone or androgens.

If adrenal cancer is suspected, Mayo specialists generally recommend surgery to remove the tumor. In adrenal cancer, testing a tissue sample for cancer (biopsy) without removing the entire tumor can cause the cancer to spread. Mayo pathologists analyze adrenal tumors after they are surgically removed. The results guide treatment decisions.

Your Mayo specialist also may recommend other tests, including:

  • CT scan, to help determine if cancer has spread to other organs
  • MRI, to help identify small abnormalities in your adrenal glands
  • Nuclear scintigraphy, to help determine the type of adrenal tumor you have and if cancer has spread to other organs
  • PET scan, to help determine the type of adrenal tumor you have

Read more about biopsy, CT scan and MRI.

Nov. 26, 2012

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