A radioactive substance or tracer that is used in a PET scan to detect the location of NETs. Also called flurodopa or 18F-DOPA.
A substance that is broken down (metabolized) from serotonin. A high level of 5-HIAA in a 24-hour urine test sample can be used to confirm whether a person’s symptoms, such as flushing of the skin (particularly the face) and diarrhea, are due to carcinoid syndrome. 5-HIAA also can be done by blood known as the 5-HIAA Serum.
A substance that can be found in the blood or in the body that is associated with the presence of disease. In cancers, specific biomarkers can point to the presence of specific cancers. With names like CA 125 (which can indicate ovarian cancer) and CEA (which can mean lung, ovarian, breast, pancreatic, or digestive tract tumors), biomarkers are also called tumor markers. Some biomarkers related to carcinoid tumors are CgA and Ki-67
The onset of all the symptoms of Carcinoid Syndrome at once. Sudden flushing of the face or upper body, a rapid and serious drop in blood pressure, and—less frequently—asthma, are all signs of carcinoid crisis. Carcinoid crisis is the most serious, life-threatening aspect of Carcinoid Syndrome, and may mimic an anaphylactic attack. It’s important to seek medical care for carcinoid crisis. Treating a carcinoid crisis with epinephrine, the most commonly used medicine for an anaphylactic attack, will make the crisis worse.
A specific variety of heart disease that can come from not regulated or prolonged Carcinoid Syndrome. Carcinoid heart disease can cause part of the heart to become obstructed by fibrous deposits, limiting its ability to pump. The exact cause is unknown, but doctors suspect that excess serotonin in the body may play a role.
A set of symptoms that occur when a functional NET that releases the hormone serotonin begins to spread or metastasize. The symptoms may be sudden or severe. This is not to be confused with Serotonin Syndrome which is caused by the use of certain serotonergic medications or drugs.
A type of neurohormone (a chemical that is made by nerve cells and used to send signals to other cells). Catecholamines are also a collective term for the hormones epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine. High levels of catecholamines in the urine or blood may indicate the presence of NETs.