Overview

Benign adrenal tumors are noncancerous masses that form in the adrenal glands. As part of your endocrine system, the adrenal glands produce hormones that give instructions to nearly every organ and tissue in your body.

You have two adrenal glands, one located above each kidney. Each gland contains two tissue types: the cortex and the medulla. Benign adrenal tumors that develop in the cortex are also called adrenal adenomas. Those that develop in the medulla are also called pheochromocytomas (fee-o-kroe-moe-sy-TOE-muhs).

Most benign adrenal tumors cause no symptoms and don't need treatment. But sometimes these tumors secrete high levels of certain hormones that can cause complications.

The most common hormones that can be over-secreted are aldosterone and cortisol from the cortex and adrenalin hormones from the medulla. In these cases, benign adrenal tumor treatment may include surgery or medications.

Clinical trials

Explore Mayo Clinic studies testing new treatments, interventions and tests as a means to prevent, detect, treat or manage this disease.

Benign adrenal tumors care at Mayo Clinic

April 15, 2020
  1. Adenoma of the adrenal gland. Genetics and Rare Diseases Information Center. https://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/diseases/5745/adenoma-of-the-adrenal-gland. Dec. 16, 2019.
  2. AskMayoExpert. Pheochromocytoma. Mayo Clinic; 2019.
  3. Lacroix A. Clinical presentation and evaluation of adrenocortical tumors. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Dec. 12, 2019.
  4. Young WF. Clinical presentation and diagnosis of pheochromocytoma. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Dec. 12, 2019.
  5. Young WF. Evaluation and management of the adrenal incidentaloma. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Dec. 12, 2019.
  6. Young WF. Treatment of pheochromocytoma in adults. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Dec. 12, 2019.
  7. Farrugia FA, et al. Radiology of the adrenal incidentalomas: Review of the literature. Endocrine Regulations. 2017; doi:10.1515/enr-2017-0005.
  8. Riggin EA. Allscripts EPSi. Mayo Clinic. Dec. 16, 2019.
  9. AskMayoExpert. Adrenal incidentaloma. Mayo Clinic; 2019.

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