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April 2, 1982

Pheochromocytoma of the Urinary Bladder: Systemic Hemodynamics and Circulating Catecholamine Levels

JAMA. 1982;247(13):1863-1864. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03320380055031

PHEOCHROMOCYTOMA is an uncommon lesion of the urinary bladder, accounting for less than 0.06% of all vesical tumors.1 However, its classic symptoms—sharp headaches, hypertension, and fainting immediately after voiding—often present a diagnostic puzzle, especially since the entity is not widely known.2,3 The present report describes a patient with both normal resting BP and 24-hour urinary catecholamine levels, in whom systemic hemodynamics and plasma catecholamine levels were measured before and after voiding.

Report of a Case  A 38-year-old man was admitted to the hospital for evaluation of piercing headaches, which lasted a few minutes and occurred immediately after emptying the bladder. This symptom had been present for about a year. The patient turned pallid and sweated profusely during these episodes and felt as though he was going to pass out. To avoid the symptoms, the patient preferred to empty his bladder only partially. Medical history was not significant, but