Canadian Journal of Anaesthesia

, Volume 37, Issue 5, pp 593–595 | Cite as

Phaeochromocytoma presenting as acute malignant hyperthermia — a diagnostic challenge

  • Gregory C. Allen
  • Henry Rosenberg
Clinical Reports


We report a case of acute hypermetabolism following the induction of general anaesthesia in an 11-yr-old boy. This episode was diagnosed and managed as an acute malignant hyperthermia crisis. However, severe hypertension during the episode led to the discovery of an unsuspected phaeochromocy-toma. A hypermetabolic state during anaesthesia has several aetiologies, but correct diagnosis during the acute episode may be difficult.

Key words

acid-base equilibrium: acidosis, respiratory complications: hypertension, pulmonary oedema hyperthermia: malignant metabolism: hyperthermia neuromuscular relaxants: dantrolene surgery: phaeochromocytoma 


On rapporte le cas d’une crise augue d’ hypermétabolisme après l’induction de l’anesthesie générate chez un enfant de II ans. Cet épisode fut dianostiqué et traité comme une crise d’hyper-thermie maligne. Cependant l’hypertension sévère durant l’épisode a amené la découverte d’un phéochromocytome non diagnostiqué. Un état hypermétabolique durant l’anesthesie a plusieurs etiologies mais le diagnostic exact durant l’episode aigu peut etre difficile.


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Copyright information

© Canadian Anesthesiologists 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gregory C. Allen
    • 1
  • Henry Rosenberg
    • 1
  1. 1.The Department of Anesthesiology, MS 310Hahnemann UniversityPhiladelphia

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