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J Korean Med Sci. 2004 Jun;19(3):401-6.

Experience with surgical excision in childhood pheochromocytoma.

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Department of Surgery, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Pheochromocytoma is one of the potentially fatal causes of childhood hypertension. The study aims to analyze the results of our experiences in pheochromocytomas and the long-term results of its surgical treatment in children. The records of 15 children (11 boys, 4 girls) treated for pheochromocytoma in our unit during the period of 1984 and 2002 were reviewed retrospectively. The average age at surgery was 11.7 yr (range 6 yr 9 months-15 yr 7 months). Localized disease is defined as the cases without the invasion of surrounding tissue, regional disease as the invasion of surrounding tissue and metastatic disease as distant metastases. The mean follow-up after pheochromocytoma excision was 95 months (range 5 to 221 months). Tumors were located in the adrenal gland in 11 (bilaterally in 4) and extra-adrenally in 4. Localized disease occurred in 14 patients and regional disease in one. Only one patient was associated with von Hippel Lindau syndrome. Adrenalectomy or total excision of extra adrenal tumor was performed. Four patients (26.7%) recurred after the first operation (at 2 yr 9 months to 14 yr) and regional disease recurred in one patient three times. Early diagnosis, surgical excision, and long-term follow up are most important for the appropriate treatment of childhood pheochromocytoma.

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