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Overview of the treatment of Cushing's syndrome

Author
Lynnette K Nieman, MD
Section Editor
André Lacroix, MD
Deputy Editor
Kathryn A Martin, MD

INTRODUCTION

The hypercortisolemia in Cushing's syndrome is usually due to an adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)-producing pituitary tumor (Cushing's disease), ectopic ACTH secretion by a nonpituitary tumor, or cortisol secretion by an adrenal adenoma or carcinoma. There are also very rare tumors that secrete corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) ectopically, and occasional cases are caused by cortisol secretion by ACTH-independent macronodular or micronodular hyperplasia of the adrenal cortex.

Treatment should be directed, whenever possible, at the primary cause of the syndrome. It is therefore dependent upon accurate differential diagnosis.

This topic provides an overview of the various therapeutic options available in the treatment of Cushing's syndrome. A detailed review of therapy for Cushing's disease and some of the primary adrenal causes of hypercortisolism is presented separately.

(See "Primary therapy of Cushing's disease: Transsphenoidal surgery and pituitary irradiation".)

(See "Medical therapy of hypercortisolism (Cushing's syndrome)".)

                     

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Literature review current through: Nov 2016. | This topic last updated: Tue Dec 15 00:00:00 GMT+00:00 2015.
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