Pregnant woman's rare diagnosis after noticing stretch marks

Josh Dutton
·News Reporter
·2-min read

A diabetic pregnant woman has been hospitalised with a rare and dangerous illness.

The woman, 27, was hospitalised in Mount Sinai Hospital, in Toronto, Canada, with high blood pressure and new-onset diabetes, according to her case in the New England Journal of Medicine.

She was also 32 weeks into her pregnancy and doctors noted stretch marks on her breasts and abdomen. She told doctors she was experiencing muscle weakness for months.

Doctors investigated whether she had Cushing’s syndrome, which would have indicated the marks on her body.

Cushing’s syndrome is when the body is exposed to too much of the hormone cortisol whether it be by exposure to steroids or the body’s adrenal glands.

A pregnant woman's stomach is seen along with a CT scan of her abdomen.
Doctor's feared a growth in the pregnant woman's adrenal gland (right) might have been a cancerous growth and chose to remove it. Source: New England Journal of Medicine

An ultrasound was performed on the woman and a mass 7cm in length was found in her right adrenal gland.

Medication was given to manage her blood pressure and the baby was safely delivered.

After delivery, a CT scan was performed and doctors were concerned the growth found in the gland was an adrenal carcinoma.

Adrenal carcinoma is an aggressive, malignant tumour in the body’s adrenal cortex. It can also lead to a hormone imbalance, nausea, weight gain and muscle weakness.

Doctors removed one of the mum’s adrenal glands a month after she gave birth, which confirmed the presence of the cancerous growth.

They also determined that the cancer had not spread.

The mum was placed on medication to further prevent any future outbreaks.

It is not clear what her current condition is.

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