Determination of the urinary steroid profile has been proposed as a sensitive tool for diagnosing adrenocortical tumors. The urinary steroid profiles were determined for patients with adrenocortical tumors. Urinary steroids were extracted, derivatized to form methyloxime-trimethylsilyl ether and analyzed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. Patients with adrenal adenomas from primary hyperaldosteronism had increased metabolites of 18- hydroxycorticosterone and aldosterone, and those with Cushing's syndrome had elevated excretion of 11-deoxycortisol, cortisol, 18-hydroxycortisol, and cortisone metabolites. In patients with adrenocortical carcinomas, increased levels of metabolites of 11-deoxycortisol or 3β-hydroxy-5-ene steroids were observed. The urinary steroid profiles of adrenal adenomas and adrenocortical carcinomas were quite different, suggesting the diagnostic validity for discriminating malignant from benign diseases. (C) 2000 Editions scientifiques et medicales Elsevier SAS.
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