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Discussion:
adrenal gland removal side effects
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When they removed my right kidney about a year ago they also removed the right adrenal gland which is attached to the kidney.
I think this is a common practice.
Here's the question:

I have put on body fat around my waist and also have lost all energy. I seem to have lost all my get up and go. I have read a lot and the weight gain around the waist and loss of energy are the symptoms of adrenal insufficiency.
My logical brain thinks this makes sense because I now have only one adrenal gland instead of two.
I have asked my Dr. about this and he just thought it was interesting without a lot of additional comment. I wasn't able to push the discussion because of time limitations with my office visit. I have done a fair amount of reading about adrenal insufficiency and the more I read the more I think it is causing my symptoms.
There are some hormones supplements that are recommended for adrenal insufficiency mainly
DHEA, and DRENAMIN. If you read up on these supplements they seem to be fairly safe, but no one addresses the safeness of these drugs when we are dealing with only one kidney.
Has anyone else had the weight gain around the waist and lack of energy that I have had since the surgery?
If so please comment. Maybe we can get one of the Dr. that monitor this forum to comment on this. I sure hope so.
God bless
Don
Posted on 01/21/09, 09:52 am
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Reminder: This is a support group for Renal Cell Carcinoma (Kidney Cancer). We trust you will do your best to remain positive and helpful. For more information, see our rules of the road.

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Reply #1 - 05/10/09  8:51am
" I also had my kidney removed last year with a large portion of my adrenal gland and now I have a lot of weight gain in middle section. I am worried about heart attack and stroke. I am conncerned. All os a sudden, it has gotten large. I am off to a specialist? Just dont know where to go. "
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Reply #2 - 05/27/09  1:24pm
" I did not have a kidney removed, but I did have an adrenal gland removed several years ago. It had a benign tumor on it. It was causing my blood pressure to soar and my potassium to bottom out... a poor combination! No one ever said anything about side effects later. I too have been reading up on adrenal fatigue. I wonder about it since the one must be overworked!

I have gained "middle" weight and have been fatigued. I also am in a very stressful situation which has been going on for about 7 months... all poor factors.

Just wondering about natural remedies and/or diet changes that might help. any advice or knowledge there? "
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Reply #3 - 05/27/09  5:56pm
" your doctor can order a blood test to see if your glands are working properly. "
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Reply #4 - 05/28/09  3:42pm
" Hi... I had my right kidney and adrenal removed three years ago.I did not experience the mid weight gain but I was extremely tired!! and depressed. My regular Doctors would not really get into the subject with me but my acupuncturist and nutritionist agreed.
I started taking various supplements,lots of vitamin c, some raw adrenals and eating better which helped alot!
i also drink a green drink called deeper greens that is great for my energy. Good Luck and good health. also for me it took time to heal and adjust. "
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Reply #5 - 07/25/10  10:07pm
" I just found this support group. I was searching for information as to why I have gained several pounds since my nephrectomy. Everyone keeps downplaying it, but it's a big deal to me. I'm also REALLY EXTREMELY TIRED. I keep hearing that it's only been 6 months and blah blah blah. Did you get any answers? They didn't remove my adrenal gland although (at least so they said), but they thought that they would have to do so since the tumor was large. Now, they have seen "something" on my liver. I have to wait until October for my next CT scan. I'm getting more depressed by the day. "
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Reply #6 - 07/26/10  8:57pm
" Hello Don - I luckily didn't have my adrenal gland removed with my RCC but had done a lot of research prior to surgery because the doc had warned that he might have to.
Understanding the adrenal glands - they produce hormones that control salt and water in the body, getting too much raises blood pressure. Another controls glucose - and of course too much means diabetes. Others are sexual hormones which are produced in small amounts but could cause females to grow hair, etc. and the last type are forproducing epinephrine and norepinephrine - our stimulant when under extreme stresses. All of them are under control of the sympathetic gland and other glands produce more effect.
Given that - if something was wrong with your other gland not producing you'd have high blood pressure, LOSE weight not gain, crave salt, extreme fatigue, overall ill feeling, low sex drive.
If you're feeling all that or even very concerned you should push your doctor to testing. It sounds very much like when I had low thyroid, but add depression to that. I'm taking thyroid meds now and am fine.
I've read alot about DHEA BECAUSE it is a hormone. MayoClinic has stern warnings. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/dh...
All I can really see about Dranamin is that it's like a diet supplement made from bovine (cow) brains with a lot of other things added depending on the brand.
If it were me, I'd ask you doc to test you before starting supplements BECAUSE of the fact that you only have one adrenal gland left. He can test for changes in cortisol levels, thyroid, and even have him look at Vitamin D tho you probably don't have a problem with all the sunshine in FL.
Hope that helped you some. "
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Reply #7 - 07/26/10  9:29pm
" TO mikamia1 - If you are now 6monts post op, you're supposed to be getting a CT, Chest X-Ray,blood work and any other tests your surgeon might feel suitable IF he's following the cancer guidelines. If they are now 'seeing' something on your liver - then I highly recommend you get your CT done ASAP! That's the very reason why the kidney cancer alliance and others have put together the guidelines to follow for us patients!
With regards to your fatigue - dependent upon how you had your surgery could be the reason. If, like me, you had open surgery, it's not unusual at all for you to still feel tired a lot for up to a year. I sure needed naps until about then.
As for weight gain - if you had lost weight with your cancer, it wouldn't be unusual at all for your body to be bouncing back now, and the body tends to overdo it, so you might gain a bit more than you'd like. Watching what you eat, making sure you're getting good vitamins, etc. might help.
Please start a new topic telling us your cancer type, surgery type, recovery, etc. and then any questions, advice or whatever so that you don't get overlooked inside Wooden's post -ok?
Wishing you the best.. "
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Reply #8 - 07/26/10  10:41pm
" I hadn't lost weight. I wasn't feeling anything from the cancer. I had laparoscopic surgery so no open incision. I've had several CT scans since the surgery and they did blood work when they saw "something" on the liver. I'll start a new topic, though.

Thanks for your reply :) "
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Reply #9 - 07/27/10  10:38pm
" Hi Don, I had my right kidney and adrenal gland removed last December and at first I lost weight but as soon as I started eating I started gaining weight and most of it has come back around the middle. I admit that I have had moments of poor me and have eaten poorly, drank a few beers and have not been as active as before but I have gained 49 pounds in 6 months. I have very little energy also and when I spoke to the Dr about it she ordered a check of my vit D level which was very low so I have been taking supplements for that with little improvement. I am frustrated as I am going back to work in Sept and none of my pants will button. I believe that a deficiency in adrenal function could definitely cause these symptoms, especially since they help distribute the proteins, fats and carbs we eat. Thanks for sharing I will bring it up to the Dr when I get through all my tests this week. "

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