Hyperaldosteronism (patient information)
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(Condition) On the Web
What are the symptoms of Hyperaldosteronism?
What are the causes of Hyperaldosteronism?
Persons with primary hyperaldosteronism have a problem with the adrenal gland that causes it to release too much aldosterone. In secondary hyperaldosteronism, the excess aldosterone is caused by something outside the adrenal gland that mimics the primary condition. Primary hyperaldosteronism used to be considered a rare condition, but some experts believe that it may be the cause of hypertension in some patients. Most cases of primary hyperaldosteronism are caused by a noncancerous (benign) tumor of the adrenal gland. Secondary hyperaldosteronism is generally related to hypertension. It is also related to disorders such as:
Who is at highest risk?
The condition is common in people ages 30 - 50.
- Abdominal CT scan
- Plasma aldosterone level
- Plasma renin activity
- Serum potassium level
- Urinary aldosterone
Occasionally, it is necessary to insert a catheter into the veins of the adrenal glands to determine which of the adrenals contains the growth. This disease may also affect the results of the following tests:
When to seek urgent medical care
Call for an appointment with your health care provider if you develop symptoms of hyperaldosteronism.
Primary hyperaldosteronism caused by a tumor is usually treated with surgery. Removing adrenal tumors may control the symptoms. Even after surgery, some people have hypertension and need to take medication. Watching your salt intake and taking medication may control the symptoms without surgery. Medications used to treat hyperaldosteronism include:
- Spironolactone (Aldactone; Aldactazide), a diuretic
- Eplerenone (Inspra), which blocks the action of aldosterone
Surgery is not used for secondary hyperaldosteronism, but medications and diet are part of treatment.
Where to find medical care for Hyperaldosteronism
What to expect (Outlook/Prognosis)
The prognosis for primary hyperaldosteronism is good with early diagnosis and treatment. The prognosis for secondary hyperaldosteronism will vary depending on the cause of the condition.