The adrenal glands are a pair of organs that sit on top of each kidney. The adrenal glands produce numerous hormones responsible for our response to stress and the balance of salt and water in our bodies. Cortisol, aldosterone, epinephrine (adrenaline), norepinephrine, and certain sex hormones are released by the adrenal glands.
Tumors in the adrenal glands can secrete excess hormones, causing Cushing’s syndrome (too much cortisol), Conn’s syndrome (too much aldosterone), or extremely high blood pressure (pheochromocytomas).
Abnormally low function of the adrenal glands is called adrenal insufficiency, which can have many different causes. Incidental harmless adrenal gland tumors are frequently discovered in healthy people on imaging tests obtained for other reasons.
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