Pheochromocytoma Differential Diagnoses

Updated: Aug 20, 2021
  • Author: Michael A Blake, MBBCh, MRCPI, FRCR; Chief Editor: George T Griffing, MD  more...
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Diagnostic Considerations

Differentials to consider in the diagnosis of pheochromocytoma include the following:

  • Alcohol withdrawal
  • Labile essential hypertension
  • Hyperventilation
  • Orthostatic hypotension
  • Multiple pharmacologic agents: Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), decongestants, and sympathomimetics
  • Illegal drug use: Eg, phencyclidine (PCP), lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), and cocaine
  • Migraine headache
  • Autonomic neuropathy (baroreflex failure)
  • Stroke
  • Toxemia of pregnancy
  • Polyneuropathy, organomegaly, endocrinopathy, monoclonal gammopathy, and skin changes (POEMS) syndrome
  • Acute intermittent porphyria
  • Cardiogenic pulmonary edema
  • Renovascular hypertension
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage
  • Lead toxicity

Differential Diagnoses