Adrenal Gland Surgery
Adrenal gland surgery is the removal of abnormal tissue in the glands above the kidneys.
Adrenal Gland Surgery in brief
Overall, diseases of the adrenal gland are uncommon and is usually found on a CT scan during diagnosis of other conditions. Most adrenal tumours removed are made up of benign tumours (non-cancerous). Malignant adrenal tumours are very rare.
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Before your Adrenal Gland Surgery
The diagnosis of adrenal tumours can be difficult, since other more common causes for the same symptoms. Medications, poor diet, pituitary or thyroid problems are more likely to cause the same symptoms. The adrenal glands are endocrine glands producing the hormones involved in:
- Hypertension (high-blood pressure) or low-blood pressure
- Levels of electrolytes (such as salt, calcium, potassium, and magnesium) in the body
- Hydration or dehydration, especially related to the above minerals and salts
- Glucose usage and the balance of blood sugar
- Physical responses to stress (for example increased heart rate and blood pressure)
- Sexual health
The hormones produced in the adrenal glands are cortisol, aldosterone, the adrenaline hormones, epinephrine and norepinephrine. The sex hormones estrogen and androgens are produced in small amounts in the adrenal glands.
A laparoscopic adrenalectomy ( or adrenal gland surgery) is minimally invasive surgery. In the past, making a large 6 to 12 inch incision in the abdomen, flank, or back was necessary for removal of an adrenal gland tumor. Today, with minimally invasive surgery, removal of the adrenal gland (also known as “laparoscopic adrenalectomy”) can usually be performed through three or four 1-2 cm incisions.
After the Procedure
Patients may leave the hospital in one or two days and return to work more quickly than patients recovering from open surgery. Patients tend to recover faster after this type of adrenal gland surgery, because laparoscopic surgery tends to be faster and have less blood loss than open surgery. Results of surgery may vary depending on the type of procedure and the patient’s overall health.
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