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Adrenal Vein Sampling

Adrenal vein sampling is a procedure used to assist in the diagnosis of endocrine disorders. It is the most reliable technique for diagnosing Conn’s syndrome. During this minimally invasive procedure, your interventional radiologist will take blood samples from your adrenal glands to determine which gland is overactive. This information is used by your referring physician to determine the best course of action for treating your endocrine disorder.

How to Prepare for Adrenal Vein Sampling

  • You may need to discontinue taking blood thinners and blood pressure medication a week before the procedure.
  • Arrive 2-4 hours before the procedure for lab testing.
  • Your interventional radiologist may perform imaging (CT scan) to look at the adrenal glands.

What to Expect

  • This procedure takes between 1.5 to 2 hours.
  • You will be under light sedation, administered through an IV. You will be conscious during the procedure, but should not feel pain.
  • Your interventional radiologist makes a small incision near the groin (which will be numbed), and inserts a catheter into the femoral vein, using imaging technology to guide it to your adrenal gland.
  • Blood is taken from the adrenal vein through the catheter, and your interventional radiologist will repeat the process with your other adrenal gland.
  • After the catheter is removed, the area of incision is covered. This does not require additional stitches.

What to Expect after Adrenal Vein Sampling

  • You will be able to leave the hospital within 3 hours after the procedure is complete.
  • Collaboration is a very important step in the process – Your interventional radiologist will test your blood to determine the hormone production activity of the adrenal glands, and communicate with your primary care or referring physician to determine the next course of action in the treatment process.

For More Information

For more information on adrenal vein sampling, or to schedule an appointment with an interventional radiologist, please call 847.570.2638.