Neuroendocrine Tumor Symptoms

Many people with neuroendocrine tumors do not experience any symptoms and may remain symptom-free for years. However, when a tumor presses on an organ or secretes excess levels of hormones, you may experience some of the following:

  • Diarrhea
  • Redness or flushing of the face and neck
  • High blood pressure
  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abdominal pain and bloating
  • Shortness of breath
  • Wheezing
  • Skin rash and itching

Neuroendocrine tumors can cause a collection of symptoms that are described as a syndrome. Two syndromes that occur with NETs are:

  • Carcinoid syndrome may occur with carcinoid tumors that cause too much serotonin to be produced. Serotonin affects mood, sleep and memory. Symptoms of carcinoid syndrome include face flushing and diarrhea.
  • Cushing’s syndrome can occur with carcinoid tumors in the lung or airways or with adrenal tumors that causes too much cortisol to be produced. Cortisol affects blood sugar, metabolism and other functions. Having too much cortisol can lead to symptoms that include abdominal weight gain, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, depression and excess hair growth.