A diagnostic approach to adrenal cortical lesions

Endocr Pathol. 2008 Winter;19(4):241-51. doi: 10.1007/s12022-008-9055-x.


The adrenal gland is not a common specimen in surgical pathology practice as, until recently, adrenal tumors were recognized in life only if associated with hypersecretion of hormones or evidence of malignancy. However, adrenal nodules are not uncommon at autopsy, and the number of these found in life is now increasing as they are identified when the abdomen is scanned for the investigation of other diseases using computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging. It is therefore becoming increasingly important for the surgical pathologist to be aware of the range of pathology in the gland and to understand how to approach the specimens. This short review will deal with lesions of the adrenal cortex.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex / pathology*
  • Adrenal Cortex Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Adrenal Cortex Neoplasms / genetics
  • Adrenal Medulla / pathology
  • Adrenocortical Adenoma / diagnosis*
  • Adrenocortical Adenoma / genetics
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma / diagnosis*
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma / genetics
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / diagnosis
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / diagnosis
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Humans
  • Kidney Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Liver Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Pheochromocytoma / diagnosis