What is it?

A malignant tumor, or cancer, is a condition in which cells in the body grow out of control. The term “malignant” indicates that there is a probability that the tumor will spread beyond the site where it initially developed.
Endocrine gland cancer is a type of cancer that begins in one of the organs of the endocrine system. The endocrine system is a network of glands that produce hormones and send them around the body through the blood. These hormones affect important processes like metabolism, growth, reproduction, stress response in the body and more.
Tumors can occur in any of the endocrine glands, including the thyroid, parathyroid, pituitary, pancreas, and adrenal glands.
An endocrine Tumor can be functional and produce excess hormones, it can suppress normal hormone production by the affected gland leading to a shortage of hormones, or it can leave hormonal activity unaffected.

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Signs & symptoms

An endocrine tumor may have no symptoms at all. When they do occur, Symptoms depend on the location of the tumor, its size, and whether it causes hormonal changes or not.
For example: a tumor of the adrenal gland, located in the abdomen, may cause abdominal pain, a lump in the abdomen, or a feeling of fullness if it is large enough.
A tumor of the adrenal cortex may also produce excess hormones - androgen, estrogen, cortisol or aldosterone.
Excess cortisol may cause: high blood pressure, high blood sugar, Growth of fine hair on the face, upper back, or arms, weight gain especially in the face and abdomen, muscle weakness, irregular periods, easy bruising, depression and more.
Excess aldosterone may cause high blood pressure, muscle weakness or cramps, frequent urination or feeling thirsty.
Excess androgen in women may cause acne, facial hair growth or deepening of the voice.
Excess estrogens in men may cause Growth of breast tissue or lower sex drive.


Some endocrine tumors cause no symptoms and therefore are diagnosed incidentally while you are being evaluated for a different reason. Several tests can be performed if an endocrine tumor is suspected:
* A medical history and physical exam to assess for physical or behavioral changes related to hormone function.
* Blood and urine tests to check for abnormal hormone levels.
* Imaging studies (ultrasound, CT scan, MRI, PET scan or other nuclear imaging).
* A biopsy to obtain a sample of suspected cancerous tissue and analyze it under a microscope


Treatment depends on the type of cancer, its size, how far it has spread and your general health. Treatment may include:
* surgery to remove the tumor or affected organ. Sometimes surgery is also done to remove the nearby lymph nodes and other tissue where the cancer has spread.
* Radiation therapy
* chemotherapy

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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