Adrenal Conditions

The Endocrine Surgery Program at UW Health in Madison, Wisconsin, provides nationally recognized care and innovative services to our patients. Learn about our approach to adrenal conditions and their treatments through the frequently asked questions below.

 

Also, watch our videos for a series of common questions about adrenal conditions, answered by our expert endocrine surgeons.

 

 

What is an endocrine surgeon?

A. An endocrine surgeon is a surgeon who specializes in the surgical treatment of the endocrine glands.

What is the adrenal gland? What does it do?

A. Your adrenal glands are small glands located on top of each kidney. They produce hormones that you can't live without, including sex hormones and cortisol which helps you respond to stress.

How is the adrenal gland removed?

A. The two main ways to perform an operation to remove the adrenal gland are performed as a minimally invasive procedure (laparoscopically) or open operation (surgical). Laparoscopic is favored because it decreases discomfort, speeds healing and leaves only tiny scars behind.

What is an adrenal incidentaloma?

A. An adrenal incidentaloma is an unsuspected tumor in one or both of your adrenal glands, usually found by chance through testing for another condition.

What is an adrenal incidentaloma?

A. An adrenal incidentaloma is an unsuspected tumor in one or both of your adrenal glands, usually found by chance through testing for another condition.

Why would I need my adrenal gland removed?

A. The most common reason for removal of the adrenal gland is excess hormone production by a tumor located within the adrenal gland. Most of these tumors are small and not cancers. They are known as benign growths that can usually be removed with laparoscopic techniques.

I have an adrenal mass. What should be done?

A. The most common reason for removal of the adrenal gland is excess hormone production by a tumor located within the adrenal gland. Most of these tumors are small and not cancers. They are known as benign growths that can usually be removed with laparoscopic techniques.

What is a pheochromocytoma?

A. A pheochromocytoma is a rare, usually noncancerous tumor that develops in an adrenal gland. Usually, this type of tumor affects one of your two adrenal glands, but it can affect both. Learn more about pheochromocytoma

What is Cushing's syndrome?

A. Cushing's syndrome is a debilitating endocrine disorder characterized by excessive cortisol levels in the blood which may be the result of a tumor of the pituitary gland, adrenal or from tumors or cancer arising elsewhere in the body. Learn more about Cushing's Syndrome