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CASE REPORT
Extra-adrenal pheochromocytoma presenting as inverse takotsubo-pattern cardiomyopathy treated with surgical resection

Abstract

Pheochromocytoma is a rare catecholamine-secreting tumour that is typically located in the adrenal medulla or along the sympathetic ganglia. The typical symptoms are episodic in nature and include tachycardia, sweating and headache. These tumours can present as transient, reversible cardiomyopathy similar to takotsubo cardiomyopathy (TCM). TCM is characterised by transient hypokinesis of the left ventricular apex and is typically induced by emotional stress. We describe the case of a 26-year-old woman with a medical history significant for headaches who presented initially to her family physician with nausea, vomiting, headache and hypertension. She was started on lisinopril 10 mg daily. One week later, she presented to the emergency department with substernal severe chest pressure. Her troponin level was elevated. Coronary angiogram showed normal coronary arteries and left ventriculogram showed inverse TCM pattern. Serum catecholamines were very elevated confirming pheochromocytoma. She was successfully treated with alpha-blockers followed by surgical resection.

  • hypertension
  • gastrointestinal surgery
  • mechanical ventilation
  • adrenal disorders
  • heart failure

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