Anaplastic adrenal cancer, also known as adrenal carcinoma and adrenocortical cancer, is an uncommon malignancy that affects the adrenal glands of your body. Unlike many other types of adrenal cancer, it is not associated with the overproduction of hormones. Since anaplastic adrenal tumors do not produce hormones, the condition generally does not produce many symptoms. If you have anaplastic adrenal cancer, you may experience stomach pain.
Approximately 1 per 1,500 adrenal tumors turns out to be malignant. CT and MRI imaging are used to diagnose adrenal lesions, but a biopsy is required for a definite diagnosis of anaplastic adrenal cancer. When evaluating an adrenal tumor, doctors focus on:
(1) Identifying the mass and treating it appropriately (including surgical removal).
(2) Identifying adrenal carcinoma early, with the intent of attempting complete surgical eradication.
(3) Reassuring patients who do not fit either of these classes and arranging for subsequent follow-up.
If you suffer from anaplastic adrenal cancer, you may be facing surgery. Radical surgical excision is the only method by which long-term disease-free survival can be achieved. If your condition is caught early enough, surgical excision may effectively remove the cancer. However, if your cancer has metastasized, surgery will not be able to correct the condition. In this case, the median survival rate is approximately five months, as opposed to 40 months for differentiated adrenal cancer.
Social Security Administration POMS: DI 23022.105 — Anaplastic adrenal cancer
Anaplastic carcinoma of the adrenal gland is evaluated under 13.21-A if inoperable, unresectable, or recurrent. Anaplastic cancer of the adrenal glands with metastases is evaluated under 13.21-B.
Anaplastic Adrenal Cancer is a very severe condition and warrants special attention from the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA recognizes this and has included the condition in its Compassionate Allowance Program, which was launched in 2008 to expedite certain disability claims.
Many people who have been diagnosed with a condition that is listed under the Compassionate Allowances Program make the mistake of assuming that their applications will be automatically approved due to their diagnosis. This is not necessarily the case. Your application must be presented properly for the SSA to understand the severity of your condition, and to recognize your condition as one that qualifies for Compassionate Allowance processing. Applying for disability benefits under the Compassionate Allowance Program requires the same procedure every applicant must follow when applying for SSA disability benefits; however, you will be notified if your condition is being considered as a compassionate allowance.
Your representative may be able to help expedite your disability claim if you have a diagnosis of anaplastic adrenal cancer.