Cardiovascular complications induced by pheochromocytoma associated with neurofibromatosis type 1 (von Recklinghausen’s disease) – case report and review of literature

Ovidiu Mitu, Dan Tesloianu, Ionut Tudorancea, Nicolae Danila, Antoniu Octavian Petriş


Neurofibromatosis type 1 (also known as von Recklinghausen’s disease) is a genetic disorder characterized by neurofibromas, skin pigmentation, eye and bone abnormalities. It is associated with pheochromocytoma in 1 to 5% of cases which determines symptoms related to catecholamine excessive secretion. We present the case of a 54-year-old man that was admitted to the cardiology clinic due to acute onset of tachyarrhythmia (atrial flutter) and high blood pressure. Neurofibromatosis type 1 was diagnosed by clinical examination while laboratory exams, 24-hour continuous blood pressure monitoring and imaging exams raised the probability of pheochromocytoma. After proper pharmacological stabilization, the patient underwent surgery and the 110/110 mm left adrenal mass was removed via abdominal laparotomy. The patient evolution was favorable and regular follow-up is scheduled. In conclusion, even though asymptomatic screening for pheochromocytoma is not recommended, this pathology should be suspected in all patients with neurofibromatosis especially if they present acute onset of cardiovascular signs.


neurofibromatosis type 1, von Recklinghausen’s disease, pheochromocytoma, cardio-vascular, arterial hypertension

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