Acute hypertensive crisis following octreotide administration in a patient with malignant pheochromocytoma
A patient with a known history of resected pheochromocytoma was evaluated for recurrent paroxysmal hypertension. The recurrent tumor was localized by magnetic resonance imaging and by somatostatin receptor scintigraphy. Since this scintigraphy demonstrated the presence of somatostatin receptors, empiric treatment with the somatostatin analogue octreotide was initiated in an attempt to stabilize catecholamine secretion prior to attempted surgical resection. The patient experienced a paradoxical reaction manifested by an acute hypertensive crisis which was rapidly responsive to intravenous nicardipine. Stimulation of such a hypertensive crisis by octreotide has not previously been reported. The etiology of this reaction is unclear. We conclude that octreotide and other somatostatin analogues should be administered with extreme caution to patients with known or suspected pheochromocytomas.