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Case report
Case of functioning thoracic paraganglioma
  1. Jinson Paul1,
  2. Felix K Jebasingh1,
  3. Thomas Alex Kodiatte2 and
  4. Birla Roy Gnanamuthu3
  1. 1Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamilnadu, India
  2. 2Department of General Pathology, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamilnadu, India
  3. 3Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamilnadu, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Felix K Jebasingh; felixjebasingh{at}


Functioning thoracic paraganglioma (PGL) is rare in clinical practice. We present a 33-year-old man with this pathology, who came with right-sided chest pain and was found to have a right-sided paravertebral mass. Fine needle aspiration cytology revealed a PGL. Urine normetanephrine was elevated and meta- iodobenzylguanidine scan showed increased tracer uptake in the right hemithorax, suggestive of a functioning neuroendocrine tumour. The patient was subjected to right PGL excision by video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery, after adequate preoperative preparations. The perioperative period was uneventful, except for a transient rise in blood pressure during the surgery. His blood pressure continued to be normal in the postoperative period. In any patient with a paravertebral mass, the possibility of PGL should be kept in mind even if the patient is normotensive. Making a preoperative diagnosis is important, because excision of functioning PGL without adequate preoperative preparation may be detrimental.

  • cardiothoracic surgery
  • endocrinology
  • adrenal disorders

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  • Contributors JP wrote the manuscript, KFJ, TAK and GBR provided critical inputs and corrections. All authors reviewed the final manuscript.

  • 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.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

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

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