The elevated serum alkaline phosphatase--the chase that led to two endocrinopathies and one possible unifying diagnosis

in European Journal of Endocrinology

A 39-year-old Chinese man with hypertension being evaluated for elevated serum alkaline phosphatase (SAP) levels was found to have an incidental right adrenal mass. The radiological features were characteristic of a large adrenal myelolipoma. This mass was resected and the diagnosis confirmed pathologically. His blood pressure normalised after removal of the myelolipoma, suggesting that the frequently observed association between myelolipomas and hypertension may not be entirely coincidental. Persistent elevation of the SAP levels and the discovery of hypercalcaemia after surgery led to further investigations which confirmed primary hyperparathyroidism due to a parathyroid adenoma. The patient's serum biochemistry normalised after removal of the adenoma. The association of adrenal myelolipoma with primary hyperparathyroidism has been reported in the literature only once previously. Although unconfirmed by genetic studies this association may possibly represent an unusual variation of the multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 syndrome.

 

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