This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Carcinoid syndrome refers to a group of symptoms that are associated with carcinoid tumors (rare, slow-growing tumors that occur most frequently in the gastroinestinal tract or lungs). Affected people may experience skin flushing, abdominal pain, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, rapid heart rate, low blood pressure, skin lesions on the face (telangiectasias), and wheezing. In later stages, carcinoid syndrome may damage the heart valves, resulting in symptoms of congestive heart failure. The condition occurs when the carcinoid tumor secretes serotonin or other chemicals into the bloodstream. Only 10% of people with carcinoid tumors develop carcinoid syndrome; most have advanced stage carcinoid tumors that have spread to the liver. Treatment generally involves addressing the underlying carcinoid tumor and medications to alleviate symptoms.
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