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Bilateral adrenal myelolipomas presenting as acute adrenal insufficiency in an adult with congenital adrenal hyperplasia
  1. Sakolwan Suchartlikitwong1,
  2. Rahul Jasti2,
  3. Joaquin Lado-Abeal3 and
  4. Ana Marcella Rivas Mejia3
  1. 1 Internal Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Centre, Lubbock, Texas, USA
  2. 2 Radiology, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Centre, Lubbock, Texas, USA
  3. 3 Department of Internal Medicine, division of Endocrinology, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Centre School of Medicine, Lubbock, Texas, USA
  1. Correspondence to Ana Marcella Rivas Mejia, marcella.rivas{at}


Adrenal myelolipomas are relatively rare tumours composed of adipocytes and myeloid cells that arise in response to chronic adrenocorticotropic hormone stimulation. We present the case of bilateral adrenal myelolipomas in a 39-year-old man with untreated congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) presenting with acute adrenal insufficiency and severe virilisation. Phenotypically, he is a man of short stature and has hyperpigmentation of the skin, gingiva and nail beds. Genital examination revealed micropenis and no palpable testes. Laboratory testing was consistent with primary adrenal insufficiency. An abdominal CT showed bilateral adrenal myelolipomas. An MRI of the pelvis revealed female reproductive organs. Chromosome study showed a karyotype of 46,XX. A CYP21A2 gene mutation confirmed diagnosis of CAH with 21-hydroxylase deficiency. The patient was treated with stress dose corticosteroids, subsequently tapered to physiological doses. We review previously reported cases and discussed diagnosis and treatment, including hormonal therapy and psychological approach.

  • adrenal disorders
  • Endocrinology
  • Genetic screening
  • counselling
  • Genetics
  • child and adolescent psychiatry
  • Psychiatry
  • psychotherapy

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  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Contributors SS gathered information and wrote the manuscript. RJ provided CT and MRI images and description. JL-A and AMRM revised the manuscript and provided an expert opinion.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.