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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Primary hyperaldosteronism

*

* Not a rare disease

Other Names for this Disease
  • Primary aldosteronism
  • Conn syndrome
  • Mineralocorticoid excess
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Overview

Primary hyperaldosteronism is a disorder caused by excess production of the hormone aldosterone by the adrenal glands. The main symptom of primary hyperaldosteronism is high blood pressure (hypertension), but other symptoms may include headaches, weakness, swelling (edema), and muscle spasms (tetany). The cause of primary hyperaldosteronism can vary. One cause may be an adenoma, or benign tumor, on the adrenal glands, which causes them to produce too much aldosterone. If primary hyperaldosteronism is caused by an adenoma, it is known as Conn’s syndrome. The condition may also be caused by enlarged adrenal glands without adenomas (adrenal hyperplasia). 

In some cases, primary hyperaldosteronism is inherited in an autosomal dominant manner, but in most cases the exact cause of the disease is unknown (idiopathic). A diagnosis is made by testing the blood for high levels of aldosterone. Treatment for Conn’s syndrome includes surgical removal of the adenomas. Medication is used to treat primary hyperaldosteronism if it is caused by adrenal hyperplasia.[1][2]

Last updated: 7/26/2016

References

  1. Gabriel I Uwaifo, MD. Primary Aldosteronism. Medscape; June 30, 2016; http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/127080.
  2. Ashley B. Grossman, MD, FRCP. Hyperaldosteronism. Merck Manual; May 2016; http://www.merckmanuals.com/home/hormonal-and-metabolic-disorders/adrenal-gland-disorders/hyperaldosteronism.
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Basic Information

  • MedlinePlus was designed by the National Library of Medicine to help you research your health questions, and it provides more information about this topic.
  • The Merck Manuals Online Medical Library provides information on this condition for patients and caregivers. 

In Depth Information

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Other Names for this Disease
  • Primary aldosteronism
  • Conn syndrome
  • Mineralocorticoid excess
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.